Cristiano Ronaldo Reaches Special Milestone As Portugal Demolish Bosnia In Euro 2024 Qualifiers

Portugal Are Sixth In FIFA Rankings
Portugal Are Sixth In FIFA Rankings

Cristiano Ronaldo led with a brace as Portugal extended their perfect record in the 2024 European Championship qualifiers with a 5-0 victory against Bosnia and Herzegovina on Monday night (October 16).

Having already qualified for next summer’s main event, Roberto Martinez’s side had the luxury to just take it easy and get the result that effortlessly came their way. However, in typical fashion, they came out all guns blazing and got the result they could be proud of.

The victory saw Portugal remain at the summit of Group J, having won all eight of their Euro 2024 qualifiers so far.

Cristiano Ronaldo Gave Portugal a Dream Start

Just four minutes into the game, Barcelona attacker Joao Felix found himself in space on the left flank and let fly with a curling shot. Anticipating danger, Bosnia center-back Adrian Leon Barisic threw himself in front of Ibrahim Sehic to stop the effort. The referee claimed that the defender had used his hand to block the shot and pointed straight to the spot.

The penalty kick inevitably fell to the team’s talisman Ronaldo, and he made no mistake making the most of it. Calm and poised, the 38-year-old dispatched a side-footed effort that easily eluded Sehic and hit the back of the net.

Just 15 minutes after giving his country the lead, Ronaldo struck again, applying a sumptuous finish to Felix’ measured through ball. The Al-Nassr superstar spotted Sehic’s advanced position and chose to dink the ball over him and into the netting with a first-time effort. The brace took the wind out of Bosnia’s sails, as they disappointingly failed to put up a fight in front of their fans.

In the 25th minute, Manchester United superstar Bruno Fernandes got on the scoresheet, bringing down Inacio’s cross-field ball and finding the top-right corner of Bosnia’s goal with a right-footed strike.

Seven minutes later, Barcelona’s Joao Cancelo scored Portugal’s fourth, with the ball taking a deflection off Ronaldo and going invitingly to the full-back. The loanee did ever so well to find the top-right corner with a thumping strike from the edge of the area.

Portugal’s last strike of the night came in the 41st minute, with Felix scoring a well-deserved goal from the penalty area. The goal was initially flagged for off-side but the VAR overturned the on-field call.

Ronaldo Becomes First To Reach 40-Goal Milestone

On the back of consecutive braces for Os Navegadores, Ronaldo has become the first player to score 40 goals in 2023, across club and country. The former Real Madrid superstar has scored 31 times in 35 games for Al-Nassr and nine times in seven games for Roberto Martinez’s Portugal.

Despite being well past his prime, Ronaldo has outscored the two most sought-after goalscorers of this generation this year. The Portugal icon has scored one more goal than Manchester City goal machine Erling Haaland (39 goals) and five more than Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) superstar Kylian Mbappe (35 goals).

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