With two sets of fixtures remaining, Portugal remains a point behind group leaders Serbia, who improved to 17 points with a 3-1 home win over Azerbaijan and have a game in hand as well as a better goal difference.
With the treble, Ronaldo became the first man to achieve 10 international hat-tricks, bringing his total to. 115 international goals from 182 caps, extending his lead as the all-time leading men’s international goalscorer.
Cristiano Ronaldo scores his tenth goal, Portugal stormed to a three-goal lead in the first 18 minutes and had the game all but won. In the eighth and thirteenth minutes. Ronaldo scored two penalties: the first was given for a foul on. Bernardo Silva by Sebastian Thill, despite replays showed the contact occurred outside the box.
Ronaldo was fouled by goalie Anthony. Moris for the second penalty, and after converting, he was forced to take it again because Andre Silva was assessed to be encroaching on the area.
After brilliant work from Bernardo Silva, Ronaldo’s Manchester United colleague Bruno Fernandes made it 3-0 five minutes later. With little over 20 minutes remaining, midfielder Joao Palhinha scored from a corner after.
Ronaldo’s overhead kick was saved, before Ronaldo scored his 10th treble for his country — and his first in over two years — with a close-range header assisted by. Ruben Neves only three minutes from time.
After the match, Portugal manager Fernando Santos said, “Our first goal, which was to win this game, has been accomplished. There are two more qualifiers to go. We were able to keep our opponents at bay and take advantage of. Every scenario to turn it into goalscoring opportunities.”
Fernandes, who scored Portugal’s third goal of the evening, praised his teammates’ efforts. “Scoring is always beneficial, whether it is early or late in the game. We knew Luxembourg would close up on us as time went on, so we wanted to get a head start. That is exactly what we did.
“I believe we played a comprehensive game overall, with the outcome being the most significant factor.”
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