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Paulo Bento won't quit job if Portugal exit


Paulo Bento

Paulo Bento

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Paulo Bento

Paulo Bento intends to stay on as Portugal coach even if the team fail to qualify from their World Cup group, saying that his tenure will be judged on results at the 2016 European Championship.

Portugal, the world's No.4-ranked team, have just one point from their first two Group G games and are unlikely to reach the knockout stage, even if they beat Ghana in Brasilia today.

Bento said: "In April there was an agreement with the association that my reign wasn't about the results at the World Cup but our objectives for 2016.

"I'm not going to resign from my job as coach, it's not my intention or the intention of the federation."

Under Bento, Portugal reached the semi-finals of Euro 2012 – losing to Spain on penalties – but struggled in qualification for the World Cup and only came through a play-off against Sweden thanks to the goals of Cristiano Ronaldo, the world player of the year.

In Brazil, the Portuguese have lost 4-0 to Germany and drawn 2-2 with the United States, with Silvestre Varela's injury-time goal keeping them in with a slim chance of progression.

Germany and the United States, who meet in Recife in the group's other game today, are three points clear of Portugal and have a far superior goal difference.

A draw will result in both of those teams advancing at Portugal's expense.

"I'm not afraid (that) in the other game, there's an agreement for a draw," Bento said.

"In football you have to have respect and dignity, be confident and nothing else. We have a match, United States and Germany have a match, too.

"We can just play our match, do our best and that's what we'll try and do."

Belfast Telegraph