Cristiano Ronaldo offers ‘clear and irrevocable proof’ that he is world’s best player, says coach Fernando Santos

Portugal head coach Fernando Santos has said that Cristiano Ronaldo‘s four goal showing against Lithuania offers “clear and irrevocable proof” that the Juventus forward is the best player in the world.

Ronaldo scored his eighth international hat-trick in Vilnius, in the process becoming the all-time leading scorer in European Championship qualifying with 25.

The four goals take his overall tally to 93, just 16 behind men’s international record scorer Ali Daei of Iran.

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“This is the clear and irrevocable proof that he is the best player in the world,” Santos said after his side’s victory.

“There is no stadium in the world where Ronaldo is not applauded. He is the best in the world.”


International XI





1/11 Jan Oblak

2/11 Joshua Kimmich

3/11 Kalidou Koulibaly

4/11 Virgil van Dijk

5/11 Andrew Robertson

6/11 N’Golo Kante

7/11 Kevin De Bruyne

8/11 Luka Modric

9/11 Moahamed Salah

10/11 Lionel Messi

11/11 Cristiano Ronaldo

1/11 Jan Oblak

2/11 Joshua Kimmich

3/11 Kalidou Koulibaly

4/11 Virgil van Dijk

5/11 Andrew Robertson

6/11 N’Golo Kante

7/11 Kevin De Bruyne

8/11 Luka Modric

9/11 Moahamed Salah

10/11 Lionel Messi

11/11 Cristiano Ronaldo

“We went to Paris in my first game, and the hotel in France was just across the street. There were a thousand people at our door.”

The Juventus striker opened the scoring from the penalty spot inside ten minutes, before Lithuania equalised midway through the first half.

But Ronaldo added three in 15 second half minutes, and a stoppage time goal from William Carvalho completed a 5-1 victory.

Portugal are second in Group B, five points behind leaders Ukraine, though Santos’ side have a game in hand.

And Santos believes his star man is far from finished.

“I think it’s strange when he doesn’t score. They say it is ending … Nothing is ending. You have to be careful because it never ends.”

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