Cristiano Ronaldo scored a dramatic late free-kick to complete his first World Cup hat-trick and rescue a point for Portugal after a thrilling 3-3 draw against Spain in Sochi. Both have not won a World Cup, but who needs it more to secure their legacy? Cristiano Ronaldo recorded a hat trick in Portugal's World Cup qualifier on Thursday to pass Pele on the list of top international goal scorers. He scored one goal in each 2006, 2010 … MOSCOW — Cristiano Ronaldo scored a sensational hat trick to snatch Portugal a dramatic point against Spain and proved he is the most balanced character of this entire World Cup. He’s just not that kind of guy. Yet he is, at the same time, one of the world's most popular celebrities, with 73 million Twitter followers and an army of fans who follow his every move, either with the ball at his feet or stepping into sports cars. pic.twitter.com/pJwSByuz5y. Ronaldo has as many detractors as admirers, is worshiped just as fervently as he is reviled, and, in his first game of the tournament, scored one goal with his left foot, another with his right and a third with a magnificent free kick to tie the match at 3-3 in Sochi. Cristiano Ronaldo's hat trick brought him level with Ferenc Puskas for the most international goals by a European player, while he also reached a number of World Cup landmarks in Portugal's 3-3 draw with Spain in Sochi, Russia, on Friday. Ronaldo's hat trick was the third for Portugal at a World Cup but first since 2002, and he tried to deflect most of the credit to his teammates. Be careful how you answer, Replacing Messi and Ronaldo: Next wave of soccer’s elite, 2018 World Cup: Ronaldo tops list of top 50 players to watch in Russia. The team is doing everything very well.". Cristiano Ronaldo Hat Trick, Heroics Cap Drama-Packed Day 2 at 2018 World Cup Spain and Portugal played a draw for the ages, and Cristiano Ronaldo capped it with a heroic hat trick … The timing couldn't have been better for Ronaldo, as his heroics came just hours after multiple reports said his representatives reached a deal with Spanish authorities to pay an €18.8 million ($21.8m) fine with a two-year suspended prison sentence in a tax evasion case. Exchanging sympathy for success is a trade-off he would happily make, every time. NEYMAR became Brazil’s second-highest goalscorer of all time last night as his hat-trick helped thump Peru 4-2 in a 2022 World Cup qualifier. - Spain boss: I wouldn't trade any of my players for Ronaldo. Arsenal will back Arteta to fix the mess. Friday night also provided Ronaldo with something to celebrate and something to curse; he became the first player to score in eight consecutive major tournaments yet was handed a reminder that if Portugal is going to make any headway in the tournament, it will be down to him and him alone. Was Cristiano Ronaldo's celebration a claim to 'GOAT? The PSG star leapt above Ronaldo with his goals l… But, much like his equalising 88th-minute free kick against Spain, Ronaldo's previous three goals all came late in the game as well. SOCHI, Russia — Cristiano Ronaldo completed a hat trick with a perfectly taken free kick in the 88th minute to give Portugal a 3-3 draw against Spain on Friday at the World Cup. Yet he remedied that perceived dearth against Spain Friday, nabbing a hat-trick in a 3-3 draw to open their World Cup campaign. Take a bow, Cristiano Ronaldo. Ronaldo scored 62 goals in 98 games for Brazil in a 17-year career that saw him winning two World Cups in 1994 and 2002, two Copa Americas in 1997 and 1999 and a Confederations Cup. Sweden vs Portugal, 2014. Among players from all continents, Ronaldo now trails only Ali Daei, who scored 109 goals for Iran from 1993 to 2006. Ronaldo scores hat trick, Portugal draws 3-3 with Spain June 15, 2018 SOCHI, Russia (AP) Cristiano Ronaldo used the World Cup to show everyone he's the GOAT. At 33, Ronaldo also became the oldest player to score a hat trick in the World Cup, breaking the record of Dutch forward Rob Rensenbrink, who was nearly 31 at the 1978 World Cup. Ronaldo completed his sixth international hat trick when he scored on a free kick in the 88th minute, giving Portugal a 3-3 tie with Spain on Friday night. World Cup 2018: Ronaldo's hat trick for Portugal against Spain has Twitter in awe Ronaldo is out to prove he's the best in the world, and three goals did a lot of talking. It was, as always, the Ronaldo show, and he was right where he likes it — at the center of attention. - Was Cristiano Ronaldo's celebration a claim to 'GOAT?' However, Ronaldo said he thought the draw was a "fair result.". 15 things that show how Arsenal, 15th in the Premier League, are a mess right now, Why Brazilian club Corinthians continue to be huge fans of Taylor Swift, Barcelona, Lionel Messi and the napkin: Oral history of his transfer, arranged 20 years ago, Porter's Columbus delivers the ultimate MLS triumph in adversity, Messi-Neymar reunion headlines UCL last-16 draw, Real Madrid crisis over, Man United vs. Man City a snooze, Liverpool and Bayern look tired, Barca need work, Liga MX winners Leon deserve title in most unpredictable of seasons, USMNT's Ledezma out for season with knee injury. Following the exploit, Ronaldo became the only player in history to record hat tricks in Serie A, LaLiga, the Premier League and at the World Cup. Which players should he build around? Ronaldo's hat trick was the third for Portugal at a World Cup but first since 2002, and he tried to deflect most of the credit to his teammates. The first was a … January preview: Messi, Upamecano, others moving? Neymar can lure Messi to PSG with another UCL masterclass, Meet the designer behind soccer's craziest kits, Two years ago, Cardassar lost everything. Tom Hamilton and Eduardo Fernandez-Abascal, Ronaldo tears up record book with hat trick, Moukoko becomes Bundesliga's youngest starter, Ronaldo: I prefer boxing, UFC over football, Messi wage 'not sustainable' - prez. Sérgio Conceição is the only Portuguese player to have scored a hat-trick at the European Championship finals. LIVE Transfer Talk: Isco out, Bale back in at Real Madrid? Ronaldo's hat trick … Cristiano Ronaldo is the only player to score a hat-trick in the final of the competition. He is the most annoying player on the planet, according to some. Who needs to win the World Cup more? Messi or Ronaldo? Cristiano Ronaldo has not scored too many free-kicks since leaving Real Madrid in the summer of 2018. You can’t sit on the fence when it comes to Ronaldo. It was a very competitive match. ", "We are very happy because the match was about to end when we were able to get the draw at three goals. At an average of 20.7 yards away, Ronaldo's three goals also came from a longer distance than any of the 27 hat tricks since the 1966 World Cup. candidate, Grealish fined £82k, handed 9-month driving ban, COVID forces NYCFC into loan move for CCL, Liga MX: 35% of players had COVID-19 in 2020, Spain, Mexico federations join forces in new deal. But it was a point that felt like a defeat for Spain, with Ronaldo’s final strike coming with just three minutes left. We have to give credit to what the team has done. Neymar’s hat-trick moved him to 64 goals in 103 games for Brazil, pulling past the great Ronaldo in second place on the nation's all-time goalscoring list. The counter argument is that he went to ground too easily, then showed his arrogant side with an impudent smile in Nacho’s direction after easily dispatching the penalty kick. Ronaldo had twice given Portugal the lead with first-half goals -- a penalty he earned himself and a goalkeeping howler -- but Diego Costa equalised for Spain with a goal in each half and Nacho Fernandez put the 2010 champions ahead, before the Portuguese star stepped up to a free kick in the 88th minute and buried it in the back of the net. In addition to Eusébio, the only other two Portuguese player to have scored a hat-trick at the World Cup finals was Pauleta in the 2002 World Cup against Poland and Cristiano Ronaldo in the 2018 World Cup against Spain. But entering this year, Ronaldo's goal count at the World Cup perhaps wasn't as high as one would expect. With 10 goals in 15 games, including a goal against Venezuela in the last game to secure first place, Ronaldo was the South … Now we have to think about the next match, which will also be difficult. Ronaldo’s first goal came at just after the 3′ mark on a penalty kick. The goal was the first of the … We want to try to beat Morocco and to try to advance to the next stage. Brazil superstar Neymar overtook Ronaldo as the second-highest goalscorer for his country after netting a hat-trick against Peru in the World Cup Qualifier. ", The hat trick also was the 51st of Ronaldo's career for club and country -- but the first time his team failed to win. However, the Portugal icon will be remembered for his iconic last-gasp free-kick against Spain in the 2018 FIFA World Cup which also completed his hat-trick. "We are not the favourites, but yes, we are candidates. The World Cup Qualifiers are here and we have three matches in store for soccer fans tonight. "The World Cup just started. On a day that began with him reportedly agreeing to pay $21.7 million as a settlement for tax fraud charges in Spain, Ronaldo ended it by extracting a measure of revenge on the country where he has made his home and millions as a member of Real Madrid. "This is the product of a lot of years of work. When Ronaldo fell to the turf early after a collision with Real Madrid teammate Nacho, it was probably justified, and those who swoon over his ability were given fuel to marvel at the fact that often the only way to stop Ronaldo is by force. He is the world’s greatest of this era, and maybe in history, and his charisma is misread as arrogance, say others. Ronaldo's treble ensured Portugal qualified for a fourth straight World … ", But Portugal coach Fernando Santos gave credit where it's due noting: "I've said it so many times, Cristiano is the best in the world.". The truth lies somewhere in between, or could even be both things at the same time. Good luck in finding someone who “quite” likes him. We are going to do the best we possibly can. Spain boss: I wouldn't trade any of my players for Ronaldo, deal with Spanish authorities to pay an €18.8 million ($21.8m) fine. -Scores a hat-trick in a World Cup qualifying playoff against Sweden that gives Portugal a 3-2 win that takes them to the following year’s finals in Brazil. He scored a hat-trick in the 2015 Semi-finals against Guangzhou Evergrande. He is a modern-day marvel and belongs in any conversation of not just the best player of today, but alongside Pele and Diego Maradona, and current rival Messi, as one of the greatest ever. The 33-year-old is as polarizing as it gets. For a reference point see: James, LeBron. Now they're chasing Copa del Rey glory vs. Atletico Madrid. Luis Suárez was the first player to score a hat-trick in FIFA Club World Cup competition. Much like LeBron, Ronaldo becomes much more likable to many when he loses, but here he was on Friday too much of a competitor to let that happen. - Marcotti: Hard to deny Ronaldo's claim he's the best He scored a hat-trick in the 2016 final against Kashima Antlers. "We have played against one of the teams favoured to win this World Cup and we have come out ahead twice, although in the end we ended up with the draw. "It is a record in my sports career but what is most important for me is what the team has done," Ronaldo said. He became the fourth player in World Cup history with at least four career goals in the 80th minute or later, joining Gerd Muller and Roberto Baggio -- who both have five -- and Gary Lineker. You’re either going to admire the shameless swagger of a player who rips his shirt off and stands on bare-chested parade after scoring, or you’re going to hate the posing and hanker for the quiet brilliance of Lionel Messi. At an average of 20.7 yards away, Ronaldo's three goals also came from a longer distance than any of the 27 hat tricks since the 1966 World Cup. There are countless websites and social media pages dedicated in his honor, and just as many hating on him. Ronaldo's personal success came at an event in which he has previously struggled to be at his best, as he matched his goal tally from his previous 13 World Cup appearances combined. That’s right, he has a chip on both shoulders. World Cup Cristiano Ronaldo's hat-trick ensured Portugal qualified for a fourth straight World Cup finals with a thrilling play-off win against Sweden. We can go through this group phase, we know it is going to be tough, difficult but we have to focus on each match, and go match by match," he added. Ronaldo scored his 82nd, 83rd and 84th career goals for Portugal to match Puskas, who played for Hungary from 1945 to 1956 and for whom FIFA has named its Goal of the Year Award. See Ronaldo's amazing hat trick in his first 2018 World Cup game. People have always believed in me and I work hard for my country. MOSCOW — Cristiano Ronaldo scored a sensational hat trick to snatch Portugal a dramatic point against Spain and proved he is the most balanced character of this entire World Cup. Spain’s performance was a story in itself, the 2010 champion overcoming the controversy that saw head coach Julen Lopetegui fired 48 hours before the tournament began. With his first goal of the day, a penalty in the fourth minute, Ronaldo became just the fourth player to score in four different World Cups, joining Pele, Uwe Seeler and Miroslav Klose. On 2 June 2004, Ronaldo scored an unusual hat-trick of penalties for Brazil against arch-rivals Argentina in a 2006 World Cup qualifying match. At an average of 20.7 yards away, Ronaldo's three goals also came from a longer distance than any of the 27 hat tricks since the 1966 World Cup. Messi or Ronaldo? 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