It's a super weekend for football fans, as the European qualifying round for the 2010 World Cup continues.
Not surprisingly, teams will be playing their hearts out as they desperately try to make it to South Africa.
But would you guess that Portugal would be in panic mode?
Well, it's true. One of the top four teams from the last World Cup in Germany is in danger of not making the cut.
Portugal is embarrassingly trailing "mighty" Denmark, Hungary and the squad that some dare to call "the European Dream Team," Albania.
The team has a mere five points in four games, And yes, they've already played against Albania (they tied, by the way).
Let's go through their games, shall we?
Portugal played their fist match in Malta. The final was 4-0, and against all odds, Malta lost the match.
Their second match ended 2-3 in a loss to Denmark. The Portuguese lost to the Danish after losing their heads during the last four minutes, in which they conceded two goals.
After the disgrace in Lisbon, Portugal tied in Sweden with a score of 0-0.
Then they met Albania; commentators in Portugal were saying that Albania "is one of the toughest teams in the group" (of course, when Malta is in your group, that's not that hard to achieve).
Well, what do you know! Albania 0, Portugal 0!
Today, they face Sweden in Oporto. It's a must-win game for the 2006 semifinalists.
See, things in Portugal are getting a bit complicated.
When you have players, like Deco, Ricardo Carvalho, and...oh gosh, what's his name again...Cristiano Ronaldo playing together on a team, along with a bunch of other talented players, you're tempted to think they have it all covered.
Well, seems like they don't.
The thing is, Ronaldo hasn't yet scored a goal. Yesterday, he left this pleasant note for the press and Portuguese fans:
"If everyone had done what I have, then, maybe, we would become World Champions."
OK, keep your cool. I know Ronaldo is not your average Einstein, but let's try to interpret the meaning behind the declaration.
"If everyone had done what I have" translates to "if we had 11 Ronaldos."
And "we would become World Champions" means...well, that's pretty clear.
I think Ronaldo has a problem: He thinks that he only plays for Man United. And there, his statement would actually have meaning.
Well, for the national team Ronaldo hasn't netted a single goal, and his exhibitions are a step from poor. I'd hazard a guess that if Portugal had a team full of Ronaldos, it would actually be worse.
The thing is, Ronaldo's just not acting that intelligently in this case. As team captain, he should be talking about how he is more used to being a Man U player because he trains with them virtually every week. That would be an acceptable excuse.
By the way, Man U and Ronaldo have won a few matches in their last few games, haven't they?
In conclusion, this "anthem to individualism" clearly tells us one thing: If Portugal does not make it, please keep in mind that Ronaldo has nothing to do with it.