Portuguese dreams of winning Euro 2012 were "stopped dead by a crossbar", the country's press said virtually in unison on Thursday.
"We've all hit the crossbar," lamented sports paper Record on its front page, showing a picture of Bruno Alves as his spot kick crashed against the horizontal.
The Diario de Noticias carried a photo of an anguished Alves being consoled by coach Paulo Bento after his miss paved the way for Spain to make the final once more.
"The Seleccao were just centimetres (inches) from the final," the sporting daily A Bola said.
But the newspaper said the team was "the pride of Portugal".
"Portugal's game was touching perfection," the daily said, adding: "Glory was so close. We lacked lady luck and she stayed on the side of the champions."