Ronaldo is now only 12 goals away from becoming the all-time men’s top goalscorer after he netted a hat-trick during Portugal’s 6-0 victory over Lithuania during their Euro 2020 qualifier on Thursday evening.
Portugal Captain Cristiano Ronaldo put on a superb display as he lead his team on their Euro campaign, showing absolutely no signs of the knee injury which led him to being substituted in his last club game for Juventus.
Ronald is chasing Iranian legend Ali Daei who currently holds the record with 109 international goals in 149 appearances. This also marks Ronaldo’s 55th hat-trick of his career as well as his 9th for Portugal.
Portugal began their conquest over Lithuania when Ronaldo scored a penalty in the 7th minute of the match. Around the 23rd minute of the game, an assist from Portuguese team mate Paciência , allowed Ronaldo to score his second goal of the match, blasting the ball right past Lithuanian goalkeeper Ernestas Šetkus, taking both teams to the half with Portugal leading 2-0 against their opponents.
Portugal returned in the second half with more gusto which saw a marvelous 3 goals being scored over an 11 minute time span by Luís Miguel Afonso Fernandes (AKA Pizzi), Gonçalo Mendes Paciência and André Silva respectively. Team captain Ronaldo the scored his hat-trick goal in the 65th minute sending their opponents packing with a 6-0 win.
Ina post match statement,Portugal coach Fernando Santos congradulated his players and expressed his confidence in team captain Ronaldo saying :
“I asked him if he was okay to play, it was just a case of having a conversation with him,”
“I never had any doubts about his condition, it was other people who had them. Nothing surprises me about Cristiano.”
However Portugal are not yet celebrating as they are still yet to confirm their spot in the Euro 2020 finals next year as Group B 3rd spot holders Serbia, won their game against Luxembourg 3-2 bringing them 1 point shy of Portugal’s 14 points.