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Remembering Cristiano Ronaldo’s iconic hat-trick vs. Spain 5 years later


Five years ago today, Cristiano Ronaldo put together one of the most impressive individual performances in the history of the FIFA World Cup.

On this day: Cristiano Ronaldo scores a HAT-TRICK against Spain in the 2018 World Cup!

In Portugal’s group stage opener against Spain at Russia 2018, Ronaldo became the oldest player to score a hat-trick in the World Cup at 33 years and 130 days old. But it wasn’t just that Ronaldo scored the hat-trick at the World Cup — he had scored 50 career hat-tricks before that, and 50 different players had scored hat-tricks in the World Cup before him, including two Portuguese players.

What made Ronaldo’s hat-trick such a feat was the resilience it took. Ronaldo opened the scoring with a penalty in the fourth minute of regulation, but Portugal’s lead didn’t last long, as Diego Costa leveled the score for Spain in the 24th minute.

Ronaldo found the back of the net again before both teams went into the halftime break, however, Costa once again responded in the second half. Three minutes later, Nacho gave Spain the lead. After dominating the first half, it appeared all the momentum had swung in Spain’s favor.

Then, in the 88th minute, Ronaldo scored one of his signature free-kicks and secured a point for Portugal. That point was ultimately the difference between Portugal advancing and not. It’s also stood as Ronaldo’s most memorable World Cup moment.

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