Ronaldo extends career hat-trick lead over Messi with 1st Serie A triple strike
Cristiano Ronaldo scored his first Serie A hat-trick for Juventus in his 46th game, which is also the first scored by a Portuguese player in the Italian top-flight, as the Bianconeri downed Cagliari 4-0 at home to move back to the top of the table
It marked the 5th consecutive Serie A Ronaldo found the back of the net in, his best such run since arriving in Italy in the summer of 2018-19, as the Juventus forward surged to second in the Serie A scoring charts for the season, 2 shy of Ciro Immobile who has scored 17 league goals in 2019-20. In the process, Ronaldo emulated Alexis Sanchez as the only players since the turn of the century to bag league hat-tricks in England, Spain, and Italy.
The hat-trick against Cagliari was the Portugal captain's 36th in European league football (1 for Manchester United in the English Premier League, 34 for Real Madrid in La Liga, and 1 for Juventus in Serie A) since January 2008, which is the most by any player during the said period.
It is the 56th time Ronaldo has scored a hat-trick for club (47) and country (9) during the course of his illustrious career. The 5-time Ballon d'Or winner has the most hat-tricks in the UEFA Champions League (8 apiece with Lionel Messi) and 9 international hat-tricks (level with Sweden's Sven Rydall).
With 36 goals Serie A goals in one and a half seasons with the Bianconeri, Ronaldo would now have his eyes set on Edin Dzeko who is the only player to score 50 or more goals in 3 of Europe's Top 5 leagues (Bundesliga - Wolfsburg, EPL - Manchester City, Serie A - AS Roma).
Published 07 Jan 2020, 00:50 IST