The Breathless Reaction To A Magical Cristiano Ronaldo Performance

Posted June 17, 2018

Ronaldo started scoring early, first winning and then converting this penalty kick in the fourth minute.

That hat-trick was, incredibly, Ronaldo's 51st for club and country, as well as being the 51st scored at a World Cup.

But Spain regrouped at the interval and drew level 10 minutes into the second half with a textbook set-piece counter, Sergio Busquets heading a free-kick back across goal for Costa to turn it in. He can thank Spain goalkeeper David de Gea for this goal. The match ended in a 3-3 draw.

If people had been left feeling a little shortchanged from the opening three fixtures of the 2018 World Cup, what happened between Spain and Portugal in Sochi on Friday night more than made up for things.

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"He knew. He knew and that's what I really admire in some players and he is a great example", said Mourinho in his role as a pundit for Russia Today.

However, he missed a great opportunity by two-touching the ball when he should have one-timed it at the net.

On Ronaldo's free-kick strike rate in major global tournaments - the goal was his first in 45 attempts - Mourinho added that Ronaldo is well practiced from the dead ball.

Ronaldo's second goal on the stroke of half-time was down to a terrible error from David de Gea, considered by many to be the best goalkeeper in the world.

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The right winger who had a breakout season in 2017/2018 made his first World Cup appearance late in this match coming on shortly before Ronaldo tied the match.

How could you not want to swap any of your players for Ronaldo?

His hat-trick also took him to six goals and past Pauleta as Portugal's second-highest goalscorer at the finals, though he remains a way off from the legendary Eusebio who scored nine. The striker beat defender Pepe to the ball and used several neat moves to clear defenders before firing a low shot into the corner from inside the area. The way the team came back was excellent with the goals.

Following the goal, Ronaldo shot a cheeky smirk Nacho's way, showing that being club teammates means nothing on the worldwide stage. The ball struck the post before going into the goal.

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Against Portugal, Morocco will need a flawless performance from Mehdi Benatia to defend against Ronaldo - when Ronaldo is held in check, Portugal is not the same team.