Cristiano Ronaldo’s hat-trick sends Portugal into Nations League final


Cristiano Ronaldo scored a hat trick as Portugal defeated Switzerland 3-1 Wednesday to reach the final of the inaugural UEFA’s Nations League.

Ronaldo converted a first-half free kick then netted two late goals to give the hosts a spot in Sunday’s final of UEFA’s newest competition.

Portugal will play either the Netherlands or England, which meet in the other semifinal on Thursday in Guimaraes. Switzerland will face that game’s loser in the third-place game, also on Sunday.

Switzerland’s second-half equalizer by Ricardo Rodriguez came from a highly controversial penalty kick awarded after a video review that canceled out a penalty that had been awarded for Portugal as play continued.

UEFA created the Nations League to give national teams more meaningful games and reduce the number of friendlies. (AP)

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