Bend it like Cristiano Ronaldo

Danny Woods
June 17, 2018

The goal marked the second-fastest goal in Portugal's World Cup history, falling only behind Jose Augusto's strike against Hungary at the 1966 edition in England.

Diego Costa celebrates with teammates after his second goal against Portugal in Sochi on Friday.

Portugal and Spain kicked off their first group B match in Sochi at 9pm local time on Friday.

With his hat-trick, Ronaldo also became the first player to score in eight consecutive major tournaments. And with matches against Morocco and Iran coming up, he is already in good position to contend for this year's "Golden Boot" trophy.

But he was, typically, Portugal's driving force, Ronaldo sending shockwaves through Spain and raising further doubts about the effects of Lopetegui's departure. Colombia midfielder James Rodriguez ended up with six goals in Brazil four years ago.

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Portugal's talisman and skipper Cristiano Ronaldo now leads the goal scorers' chart after plundering three goals against Spain in an explosive contest that ended 3-3 on Friday night.

"The World Cup has only just begun". "With Cristiano, one moment of inspiration can be enough". Ronaldo's goals played a leading role in making Portugal vs. Spain the 2018 World Cup's first great game and one of the best-ever contests in world soccer's championship tournament.

"Great players are adaptable, flexible and change routines". Spain conceding as many goals in one match as they did throughout their unbeaten qualifying campaign. What is important is the team that plays, and the strategy and no more than that. Cristiano Ronaldo drew an early penalty and converted from the spot in the fourth minute, but Diego Costa equalized the game with a stunning solo goal in the 24th. The apparent message? I'm the GOAT, not Lionel Messi. On the other hand, European champions Portugal will be banking on their star performer - Cristiano Ronaldo - to guide them to victory. "They have been playing together a long time and it is a pleasure to have these players".

Ronaldo's performance against Spain came despite him arriving in Russian Federation surrounded by distractions about his club future and a tax-fraud accusation back in Madrid.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Ronaldo scored a hat-trick in the match at the age of 33.

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