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Fernando Santos reveals what will make him resign

Portugal: Fernando Santos reveals the ONE thing that will make him resign as WC qualification remains at risk

November 17, 2021 By Emmanuel K. Budu-Annor
The future of the Portuguese head coach has come under scrutiny after his side failed to secure automatic qualification to Qatar 2022.

Head coach of the Portuguese men's national team Fernando Santos have stated that he will lay down his tools and resign should his side fail to secure qualification to the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. The 67 years old coach has received the backing of the Portuguese Football Federation despite failing to secure automatic qualification to next years tournament.

Despite earning the tag as favorites to finish at the top of the pile in Group A, Portugal were met with a calamitous end and missed out on automatically progressing to the mundial. With two games remaining, they were thought to have clinched first place in their group, only to slide to second after earning a single point from matches against the Republic of Ireland and Serbia. The latter was rather painstaking as up until the 90th minute, the former European champions were on course to sail through with the scoreline at 1-1.

Nevertheless, the script was altered after Aleksandar Mitrovic nodded home the eventual winner for Serbia to break Portuguese hearts inside Estadio da Luz and beyond. The game's outcome did not sit well with the players of the hosts, particularly skipper of the side Cristiano Ronaldo who broke down and subsequently lashed out at his coach for the turn of events.

Fernando Santos has since squashed claims of a fall-out with his star man and insisted that Portugal will eventually book their place at Qatar 2022. Speaking to the national television on Wednesday, he justified his methods and ruled out the possibilty of departing ahead of the play-offs next year.

"I don't believe my way of playing is outdated," he sad.

"I've total confidence in Ronaldo, Ronaldo has total confidence in me.

"The day we don't achieve our objectives, I'll leave. So far we've always achieved our objectives."

The play-off semi-finals take place next year on Thursday 24 March, with the finals on Tuesday 29 March. The draw to determine the fixtures is scheduled for Friday November 26 in Zurich. Switzerland. The teams to compete for one of the three spots left include Portugal, Scotland, Italy, Russia, Sweden, Wales, Turkey, Poland, North Macedonia, Ukraine, Austria and Czech Republic.


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