The records just keep tumbling for Cristiano Ronaldo as he set a new international landmark just minutes into his World Cup campaign on Friday.
Ronaldo has become accustomed to seeing the records fly over the last decade due to his remarkable goalscoring ability at Real Madrid.
But he is also no slouch at international level either, striking early to put Spain on the back foot.
After just two minutes the forward won a penalty off club team-mate Nacho and made no mistake in executing the spot-kick himself, sending David de Gea the wrong way.
The goal was the fastest in a World Cup game since 1966, when Jose Augusto scored after 1:35 against Hungary and also sealed an incredible record of consistency over Ronaldo’s career.
Ronaldo has now scored in eight consecutive major international tournaments – including World Cups, European Championships and Copas America – a feat no European or South American player has ever achieved before.
He also becomes the fourth man to score in four World Cup finals, having previously netted in 2006, 2010 and 2014.
Only Brazil’s Pele and Germany duo Uwe Seeler and Miroslav Klose can boast a comparable record on the world’s biggest football stage.
And for good measure, he recorded the 51st hat-trick of his career with two further goals, the latter a stunning free-kick – his first successful effort in 45 attempts in a major international tournament – that gave David de Gea no chance. He also became, at 33 years and 130 days old, the oldest player to hit a triple at the World Cup.
It was also the 51st hat-trick in World Cup history, but it might not be the last as the finals jumped into life on Friday.
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