Soccer-Portugal beat Ghana 2-1 but both go out


BRASILIA, June 26 (Reuters) - Cristiano Ronaldo scored his first goal of the tournament as Portugal beat Ghana 2-1 on Thursday but both teams were eliminated from the World Cup as the United States held on to second place in Group G despite their defeat by Germany.

Starting the day on a point each, both teams knew they needed a victory to have any chance of progress and Portugal started strongly as Ronaldo hit the bar and sent a close-range header straight at goalkeeper Fatawu Dauda before Ghana's John Boye sliced a cross into his own net after 31 minutes.

Asamoah Gyan headed the equaliser from a lovely Kwadwo Asamoah cross 12 minutes into the second half and Abdul Majeed Waris missed the chance to put Ghana ahead when he headed wide from point-blank range five minutes later.

Ronaldo finally found the net in the 80th minute but Portugal, thrashed 4-0 by Germany in their opening game, needed a far bigger win to overhaul the Americans' goal difference.

Germany topped the group with seven points and play the Group H runners-up - probably Algeria, Russia or South Korea - while the second-placed U.S. will face the Group H winners, likely to be Belgium. Portugal finished with four points and Ghana on one. (Writing by Mitch Phillips, editing by Justin Palmer)

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