Portugal are into the quarter-finals of the World Cup after thumping Switzerland 6-1 last night – and it was former Wolves target Goncalo Ramos that stole the show.
Fernando Santos’ side demolished the Swiss at the Lusail Stadium, with Cristiano Ronaldo starting the game on the bench.
The 37-year-old was among the substitutes which was an extremely bold move for Santos.
But the manager’s decision turned out to be an inspired one.
Ramos, 21, put on an absolute finishing masterclass, netting a hat-trick on what was only his fourth appearance for the senior side.
He opened the scoring with a thumping finish with his weak foot into the roof of the net from inside the box.
He then got across his man at the near post to turn in Diogo Dalot’s low cross.
And he then chipped the goalkeeper for his hat-trick, after being put through by Joao Felix.
Ramos also laid on an assist for Raphael Guerreiro.
It was truly an outstanding centre-forward’s display. And it was all the more impressive given how many eyes were on him after being brought in ahead of Ronaldo.
Ramos’ stock will rise significantly off the back of this performance.
And he was already having a magnificent season with Benfica. For them, he has scored 14 goals in 21 games this season, and laid on six assists.
Plenty of Wolves fans will have been watching last night’s game. Perhaps to see if Ruben Neves and or Matheus Nunes would be playing.
Neves came on as a substitute and got around 20 minutes, while Nunes was unused.
And they will have seen that Ramos performance and wondered what might have been.
Former Wolves manager Bruno Lage reportedly wanted to sign Goncalo Ramos, as star hits World Cup hat-trick for Portugal
Ramos looks to be a serious player.
Not only is he a clinical finisher, but he holds the ball well and links up with those around him like someone much more seasoned. He also has a nice turn of pace.
Wolves were actually linked several times with a move for Ramos during the last transfer window.
In the end nothing materialised, and a move for Sasa Kalajdzic was sanctioned.
Quite possibly, Wolves may come to regret not signing Ramos, whose profile has now grown significantly.