Cristiano Ronaldo led his side by example in Friday’s 2018 World Cup qualifier, as he scored four goals in Portugal’s 6-0 win over Andorra.
Having missed Portugal’s opening Group B match against Switzerland, which the Swiss won 2-0, the Real Madrid star returned with a bang tonight, and found the opposition net on four occasions.
He opened the scoring in the 2nd minute with a decent volley, and immediately doubled the score 2 minutes later, by scoring a header past the Andorra goalkeeper Gomes Moreira. He got his hat-trick in the 47th minute with a stunning volley, and scored his fourth and final goal of the game in the 67th.
The Portuguese captain also got two Andorran players sent off, after midfielders Jordi Rubio and Marc Rebes received a second yellow and a straight red respectively, for committing bad fouls on Ronaldo.
This was the first time Ronaldo scored four times for his country in a single game. The night also produced the 31-year-old’s 42nd career hat-trick.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s performance against Andorra tonight was a perfect response to the people who have been doubting his fitness levels lately.
Former Real Madrid manager Fabio Capello was one such critic, who blamed Ronaldo’s low fitness as the primary reason behind Madrid’s poor form and win-less streak.
“The problem for Real Madrid now is Cristiano Ronaldo, because he is not well physically and is their best player,” Capello told Spanish radio station Onda Cero.
However, after tonight’s performance, it is clearly evident that the 3-time Ballon d’Or winner is in perfect shape, and raring to go.
Watch his complete performance against Andorra: