Scripting history once again, Cristiano Ronaldo has now become the all-time international men’s leading scorer as the Portuguese superstar scored twice in the qualifiers group match against Ireland. Ronaldo scored twice in the final minutes of the match to rescue Portugal and also set a new record. The 36-year-old has once again silenced his critics and stepped up in the crucial minutes of the match to walk away with three points. It was Ronaldo’s night to shine, however, the Portuguese great was also frustrated at times which led to an altercation with Ireland’s Dara O’Shea and Ronaldo was surprisingly seen slapping the Irish defender before he could take the penalty kick.
Right in the ninth minute of the clash, Jeff Hendrick’s untimely slide tackle on Bruno Fernandes gifted Portugal a penalty. The officials checked with VAR for several minutes before abiding by their decision. While Ronaldo, waiting at the penalty spot, placed the ball before O’Shea kicked the ball away, leading to Ronaldo retaliating by slapping the defender.
O’Shea immediately fell to the ground holding his face but Ronaldo escaped any punishment as the referees at the time did not catch the incident. Once the referees consulted with VAR, Ronaldo was ready to put the ball at the back of the net from the spot, however, astonishingly the young Irish goalkeeper Gavin Baznu saved the penalty to deny Portugal the breakthrough.
Ronaldo escaped any form of action from the referees and was given a golden opportunity, which the striker made the most of in the clash. Ireland took the lead in the 45th minute through John Egan’s header.
However, knowing how resilient Ronaldo is, the Manchester United player struck a wonderfully timed header to level the score and create history. The 36-year-old was on level with Iran’s Ali Daei 109 and with the late header, Ronaldo became the all-time international men’s leading goal scorer.
Breaking the Irish hearts, Ronaldo found the back of the net in the dying minutes of the match to clinch a 2-1 win for Portugal and create history. With the win, Portugal have extended their lead in the WC Qualifier UEFA Group A with 10 points.
It was a lucky day for Ronaldo to get away with his actions as he was able to script history. After the match, Ronaldo took to Instagram to celebrate the historic occasion.
Ronaldo has now scored 111 international goals in 180 matches played, overtaking Daei’s 109 in 149 appearances. Given the current form, defying the age factor, the Portuguese is set to raise the bar higher and with many international matches scheduled till next year, Ronaldo has multiple opportunities to increase his tally as there is no catching the five-time Ballon d’Or winner now.