- Cristiano could be crowned The Best FIFA Men’s Player for third year in a row
- Portugal star enjoyed another record-breaking season in 2018
- FIFA.com rounds up a number of his noteworthy milestones
He could be crowned The Best FIFA Men’s Player for the third consecutive time on Monday. At the age of 33, Cristiano Ronaldo is still among football’s modern-day elite and shows no signs of relinquishing his crown.
As has been the norm for the Portugal star through the years, Cristiano continues to break and set new records for club and country – and 2018 has been no different in the storied career of the current Juventus star.
From raising the bar in personal UEFA Champions League accolades with former club Real Madrid to writing new chapters in the FIFA World Cup™, the Portugal forward continues to make his presence felt.
FIFA.com takes a look at some of the noteworthy milestones that Cristiano set in 2018.
Pele, Uwe Seeler and Miroslav Klose. At Russia 2018, Cristiano joined those three footballing titans by becoming just the fourth person to score in four different editions of the World Cup. The Portugal goal-getter had already found the net at Germany 2006, South Africa 2010 and Brazil 2014 before opening his Russia 2018 account in the six-goal thriller against neighbours Spain in Sochi.
Real Madrid’s European triumph in May saw Cristiano become the first five-time UEFA Champions League winner. The 33-year-old joined the likes of Alfredo Di Stefano, Paolo Maldini and Alessandro Costacurta in winning five Champions League/European Cups, but Los Blancos legend Paco Gento still leads the way with six European Cup triumphs.
Cristiano's UEFA Champions League wins
- 2007/08: Manchester United
- 2013/14: Real Madrid
- 2015/16: Real Madrid
- 2016/17: Real Madrid
- 2017/18: Real Madrid
The amount of successive Champions League games in which Cristiano found the net for Real Madrid, breaking the previous record held by Ruud van Nistelrooy. The Dutchman set the initial record in the 2002/03 season with goals in nine consecutive games. The match in which Cristiano broke the record – where he netted a brace against current club Juventus in April 2018 – saw him bag a stunner which has been nominated for the FIFA Puskas Award.
The number of goals Cristiano netted for Real Madrid in the 2017/18 Champions League season, eclipsing Liverpool’s Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane who finished joint second with ten. It was the sixth successive season Ronaldo topped the tournament’s scoring chart.
Aged 33 and 131 days, Cristiano became the oldest hat-trick scorer in World Cup history. By netting a treble in Portugal’s Russia 2018 box-office showstopper against Spain, the forward surpassed the Netherlands’ Rob Rensenbrink, who held the initial record after bagging three against IR Iran at the 1978 FIFA World Cup Argentina.
Thirty-eight matches at the FIFA World Cup and UEFA EURO is what Cristiano recorded against Uruguay in the Round of 16 at Russia 2018, putting himself level with Brazil 2014 winner Bastian Schweinsteiger. No other player has registered more appearances in those two tournaments.
Cristiano’s early opener against Morocco in Russia 2018’s group stages saw him overtake the legendary Ferenc Puskas of Hungary as the most prolific European male at international level. The Portugal star, however, still has a way to go to catch IR Iran’s Ali Daei (109) as the top-scoring man in international football.
The number of all-time Champions League appearances Cristiano had to his name at the end of the 2017/18 campaign. 2018 saw the former Real Madrid star surpass Xavi (151) as the outfield player with the most appearances in the competition.