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Portuguese seek culprits for World Cup flop


Portugal fans searching for explanations for their team's disappointing World Cup performances are finding plenty of possible culprits.


A last-gasp 2-2 draw against the United States on Sunday, following a 4-0 thrashing by Germany, has left the Portuguese on the verge of a first-round exit from the tournament in Brazil.


Returning home after the group stage would be a stunning upset for team ranked fourth in the world by FIFA.


The finger-pointing has already begun, though. Targets for criticism include the team's perceived over-dependence on star Cristiano Ronaldo, poor physical preparation, misguided organization for the tournament, coach Paulo Bento's failure to bring new players into the team, and a squad that's thin on quality midfielders and strikers.


A glum Ronaldo commented, "we're probably just an average team."

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