Portugal captain and talisman Cristiano Ronaldo is no stranger to breaking records and toppled another on Friday night when he became the first player to attempt exactly 100 shots at World Cup tournaments.
Soon after becoming the first player to score at five separate World Cups earlier on in the competition, Ronaldo has sealed his place in the history books once again with his 100 attempts.
Since data on this topic began in 1966, no player has registered more shots on goal than the 37-year-old forward, which adds up considering how often Ronaldo poses a goal threat for his nation. That century of shots has come in 20 World Cup outings and have produced a return of eight goals.
Controversially, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner feels his World Cup goal tally should actually read as nine rather than eight, given Ronaldo is adament he got on the scoresheet during the 2-0 win over Uruguay on match-day two in Group H.
The former Real Madrid man was adamant he had opened the scoring when Bruno Fernandes whipped in an inviting cross that Ronaldo claims he got his head to, guiding it into the far bottom corner in the process.
However, technology from ball manafacturer Adidas proved that the ball had actually evaded Ronaldo’s glance and simply nestled into the back of the net as a direct result of Fernandes’ cross. There was confusion in the immediate aftermath, with the stadium announcer claiming the Manchester United midfielder had scored it despite Ronaldo wheeling away as if he was the hero.
Even Fernandes confessed he was unsure who had scored the goal at the time, claiming: “I celebrated [the goal] as if it had been Cristiano’s goal. It seemed to me that he had touched the ball. My aim was to cross the ball for him.
“We are happy with the victory regardless of who scored. The most important thing is that we achieved our aim which is to be in the next round,” he added.
In a rather embarrassing turn of events for Ronaldo, FIFA’s official statement confirmed the goal would go to Fernandes as it read: “In the match between Portugal and Uruguay, using the Connected Ball Technology housed in adidas’s Al Rihla Official Match Ball, we are able to definitively show no contact on the ball from Cristiano Ronaldo for the opening goal in the game.
“No external force on the ball could be measured as shown by the lack of ‘heartbeat’ in our measurements. The 500Hz IMU sensor inside the ball allows us to be highly accurate in our analysis.”
Thankfully, there is still time for Ronaldo to add to his tournament tally of one, which came in Portugal’s opening game against Ghana, as he has helped guide his nation into the round of 16 stage where they will meet Switzerland on Tuesday, December 6.