By Artyom Tonoyan
In his career, Cristiano Ronaldo has scored 57 hat-tricks. In this context, he has no equal in the 21st century and even his main rival Leo Messi is three lines below. The Portuguese scored his first hat-trick with Sporting. For the Red Devils, Cristiano has only one hat-trick.
When in the summer of 2003 a skinny guy from Madeira named Cristiano arrived at the legendary Old Trafford, he was still far from the popularity of the general football audience. Of course, the Portuguese was talented and promising, but he had a long way to go to prove his stellar worth. And it is worth noting that during the first seasons, Ronaldo tried to win the fans’ sympathy not with goals, but with dexterous tricks and feints. This behavior of the Portuguese amused the stands.
After three years at United, Ronaldo has scored 28 goals. After that, he realized that the road to football greatness is usually strewn with goals. To become the best player in the world, you need to either score yourself or create goals for others, influencing the outcome of matches.
Three consecutive championships in the Premier League and two prizes for the best player of the tournament. The cherished triumph in the Champions League and of course the Golden Ball. After such success, no one doubted that he could stand on a par with the greatest players of this game.
Nevertheless, no matter how the Portuguese shone in England, he managed to score 3 goals in one match only once. It happened in early 2008, in an amazing match with Newcastle. Throughout the first half United dominated, but there weren’t many dangerous moments.
As soon as the second half began, justice prevailed for the actively playing hosts. The first goal was scored by Ronaldo. The Portuguese from the free-kick struck a cunning blow under the wall, with which the guests’ goalkeeper could not cope. Soon, Carlos Tevez doubled the lead of his team. But that evening belonged exclusively to Cristiano.
In the 70th minute, United played a gorgeous vertical combination, during which Ronaldo was in a shock position and issued a double. The match rolled smoothly to its end. There was no longer any doubt about the success of the owners. But in the end, the guys of Alex Ferguson decided to please the audience at Old Trafford with a real waterfall of heads.
Since 80 minutes, the Red Devils have scored 3 more goals. First, Ferdinand pleased the stands, and then Tevez. Well, between these goals, Ronaldo scored the first hat-trick in a Manchester United jersey. Cristiano put the defender on the lawn with a sharp feint, and then sent the ball into the net with an accurate blow.
When the question arises who is the best player in the world, many talk about Messi and it’s hard to argue with that. But at the same time, Ronaldo can play for Millwall, Queens Park Rangers and Doncaster and still score hat-tricks. I’m not sure Messi can do that. This is how Sir Alex Ferguson compared the two legends in 2015.