Hosts Portugal made a nightmare start to their Euro 2004 campaign, suffering a shock defeat to unfancied Greece. Porto's Estadio do Dragao was packed
with thousands of expectant Portuguese fans for the opening game, but their team appeared hamstrung by nerves.
Georgios Karagounis pounced on a mistake by Paulo Ferreira to open the scoring after only six minutes. Angelos Basinas' penalty made it 2-0 just after
half-time, before Cristiano Ronaldo's injury-time consolation.
Having qualified for the tournament as hosts, Portugal were playing their first competitive match since losing to South Korea in the World Cup group
stages two years ago. That, as well as the pressure of a nation's hopes, clearly showed as Portugal struggled initially.
Greece carved out the first clearcut chance after just a minute, Angelos Haristeas failing to reach a Zisis Vryzas cross from eight yards. And only
six minutes later, the home fans were stunned when Greece opened the scoring. Chelsea transfer target Ferreira gave the ball away to Karagounis who
was allowed a free run on goal before he despatched a sweet strike into the bottom left-hand corner.
7 mins: Karagounis fires Greece into a shock lead
26 mins: Rui Costa misses a free header for Portugal
51 mins: Greece double their lead through Basinas' penalty
93 mins: Ronaldo fires home a late consolation
With Vyrsas causing panic in the Portugal's defence, and the hosts' keeper Ricardo looking decidedly jittery, Greece might have extended their lead.
Haristeas sliced his shot after being put through by another defensive mistake by Portugal, and Panagiotis Fyssas saw his volley fly well over the
bar. After quarter of an hour, Portugal finally began to find their feet.
And on 26 minutes, Rui Costa should have been celebrating the equaliser but after Ferreira found him unmarked in the box, the AC Milan midfielder
could only direct his header tamely wide. Portugal continued to have more of the ball but were let down by a lack of urgency in the final third of the
But just after half an hour, Greek keeper Antonios Nikopolidis bravely dived at Sabrosa Simao's feet as the midfielder looked to apply the finishing
touch after turning his marker. Portugal boss Luis Felipe Scolari responded to a lacklustre first half by replacing Simao and the ineffectual Rui
Costa with Deco and Ronaldo.
But matters only got worse for the hosts.
Ronaldo made a clumsy challenge on Seitaridis and Basinas confidently stroked the resulting penalty into the top right-hand corner. Even two goals
behind, Portugal's lone striker Pauleta remained isolated up front and Greece's defence had a relatively easy task.
With 12 minutes remaining, Deco might have put Greece under pressure but after shaking off his marker, he sent a powerful strike high and wide.
Ronaldo converted a Figo cross in injury-time but it was too late to save his side and Portugal left the pitch with their championship hopes in the
balance after only one game.