Spain beat Portugal 4-2 in a penalty shootout Wednesday following a scoreless draw after extra time.
Cristiano Ronaldo had several chances for Portugal, but he sent three shots well over the crossbar as his team held its own for the entire match. Tempers frayed at times, with Portugal center half Pepe getting a yellow card for a challenge on Xabi Alonso as they went for a high ball. Ronaldo also received some heavy challenges late in the match.
Cesc Fabregas scored the deciding penalty to give Spain a 4-2 shootout win over Portugal and a spot in the European Championship final.Andres Iniesta, Gerard Pique and Sergio Ramos also scored for Spain.
Spain midfielder Andres Iniesta forced Portugal goalkeeper Rui Patricio into a superb reflex save in the 103rd minute. Iniesta ghosted into the penalty area then held his head in disbelief as Rui Patricio reacted brilliantly to get a strong hand on his shot after Jordi Alba cut the ball back toward the penalty spot.
“We’re playing better in defense than what the characteristics of our players would suggest,” Spain coach Vicente del Bosque said. “That’s what earns victories.”
Spain will next face either Germany or Italy on Sunday in Kiev.