Bruno Fernandes and Portugal were awarded the most controversial penalty of the 2022 World Cup against Uruguay on Monday evening.
Fernandes opened the scoring in bizarre fashion at the Lusail Stadium as he curled in a cross for Cristiano Ronaldo from the left.
The five-time Ballon d'Or winner did not appear to touch the ball as he tried to get his head on the stunning delivery, but ran off celebrating as though scored for a second time in this year's showpiece.
The stadium announcer and FIFA then confirmed that it was Fernandes' goal. And the Manchester United star helped himself to a second late on after scoring a penalty that he won.
Fernandes found space in the area and looked to weave his way through to a one-on-one opportunity. He was dispossessed by Atletico Madrid defender Jose Maria Gimenez but loudly appealed for a handball.
The referee went to the VAR screen and subsequently awarded the spot-kick, despite it looking incredibly harsh on Gimenez, who had nowhere else to put his trailing hand after he had fell the floor to make the tackle.
With Ronaldo substituted, Fernandes assumed duties from 12 yards and after a little hop and skip, rolled the penalty in with such swagger.
Great penalty goal from Bruno 🇵🇹 pic.twitter.com/j3Kwq1NUdb— All things Portugal (@PortugalTaIk) November 28, 2022
Fans fumed over the deliberate handball decision, which did not apply common sense in the situation.
One user on social media wrote: "I guess that’s a penalty by the rule book but like what is Gimenez meant to do in that situation."
A second said: "No way that’s a penalty Gimenez is just trying to break his fall. The game is gone if those are the penalty decisions we’re going to see at a World Cup. It’s an absolute disgrace."
A third weighed in: "That’s never a penalty, it does hit José Giménez’s hand but he’s falling back and although it is the law sometimes you have to use your common sense.
A third added: "I don't like that penalty decision. Gimenez goes to ground with his arm in a natural position, because he's falling backward. You're going to have your arm out like that to soften the landing when you fall. It's instinctual."
Portugal are through to the round of 16 after two wins out of two. They face South Korea in their final group fixture on Friday.
Featured Image Credit: ITV & Dale Johnson
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