🚨 BREAKING: coming live from Fabrizio Romano, Scouts from Manchester United are present in Italy as they hold negotiation to bring Georgia international Khvicha Kvaratskhelia to United with his awesome performance in the Euros. According to reports, Kvaratskhelia is one of United’s main targets in the upcoming transfer window to overcome the problem of the lack of quality wingers at the club following the immediate departure of Greenwood and Sancho and the underperformance of Antony and Rashford.


It’s a night Khvicha Kvaratskhelia will never forget.

The attacker not only propelled Georgia into the Euro 2024 knockout rounds on Wednesday but also achieved his childhood dream by defeating Cristiano Ronaldo.

Georgia, the lowest-ranked team at this year’s European Championship, was not expected to advance past the group stage in its debut tournament.

Against all odds, the Crusaders delivered a stunning performance against Portugal, winning 2-0 in Group F. Kvaratskhelia scored in the second minute, and Georges Mikautadze added a second-half penalty. The final whistle sparked euphoric scenes on the field and among the fans, with tears of joy flowing at the Arena AufSchalke in Gelsenkirchen.

Meanwhile, fireworks illuminated the sky in Tbilisi, Georgia’s capital, as fans celebrated the historic victory in the streets.

“This is the best day in the lives of Georgians,” Kvaratskhelia said after the game, according to Reuters. “Everybody is overjoyed; we just made history. Nobody believed we would be able to defeat Portugal. But I believe this is why we are a powerful team.”

Georgia’s assistant manager, David Webb, told CNN Sport the morning after the match that the atmosphere post-game was “immense” as players and staff celebrated with the crowd. Webb, a key member of manager Willy Sagnol’s team, noted that the group remained “calm” before the crucial match and executed their game plan perfectly. Known for his motivational skills, Webb had given a presentation about self-belief inspired by smaller nations like Wales and Iceland, which had performed admirably at past European Championships.

“It was about giving the players a bit of belief that there is no reason we can’t do something like that as well,” Webb told ESPN. While the post-match celebrations were special, they didn’t last too long.

Ronaldo’s encouragement added to the moment. Videos on social media showed the team’s jubilation in the locker room, with Kvaratskhelia wearing Ronaldo’s shirt. Despite being upset during the game, Ronaldo had given his shirt to an emotional Kvaratskhelia after the loss. A 2013 photo circulating on social media showed Ronaldo surrounded by young children in Tbilisi, one of whom was Kvaratskhelia, who later shared it on his Instagram Story. The Napoli forward also spoke with his childhood hero before the game, receiving Ronaldo’s good wishes.

“When he comes to you before the match and says, ‘I wish you success,’ that is amazing,” Kvaratskhelia said. “I realized that we could achieve so much today because it gave us so much incentive.”

After the final whistle, Kvaratskhelia consoled Ronaldo before celebrating with his teammates. Despite the defeat, Portugal still qualified as group winners. Kvaratskhelia then posted a photo of Ronaldo’s shirt alongside his Man of the Match award on Instagram, captioned “Dreams.”

Although Kvaratskhelia helped Napoli win the Serie A title in 2023, he stated that beating Portugal and reaching the knockout stages with his country was the pinnacle of his career. “This is the best day of my life because it was more difficult to do it with the Georgian team than with the Napoli team,” he told reporters. “There was no individual best player. It was teamwork, and we proved to everyone that we could really play.”

If Georgia hopes to progress further in the competition, they will rely on Kvaratskhelia again when they face Spain in the round of 16 on Sunday. “We’ve done really well to get to this stage and to write another page in Georgian history,” Webb told reporters. “So we go into the Spain game with no fear, lots of belief, lots of confidence, and we’ll give it our best and see where we go.”

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