How many world cups has ronaldo played in ? Portuguese legend Cristiano Ronaldo is widely regarded as one of the best footballers of all time and one glance at the statistics is enough to show why.
A five-time winner of the Ballon D’Or, Cristiano Ronaldo has scored the most goals in men’s international football and is the only man to score more than 800 goals for club and country.
Cristiano Ronaldo has also led his country to UEFA European Championship glory in 2016 and the UEFA Nations League title in 2018-19.
However, the FIFA World Cup title eluded Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal and the superstar has not always been at his best in the marquee showpiece.
Cristiano Ronaldo has scored eight goals in 22 matches at the FIFA World Cup, scoring in every edition he has played in – 2006, 2010, 2014, 2018 and 2022. In fact, Cristiano Ronaldo became the first man to score in five football World Cups after he netted one in Portugal’s opener against Ghana at the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar.
Ronaldo is only one goal behind the legendary Eusebio, who has nine FIFA World Cup goals, who is the top goal-scorer for Portugal in World Cups.
Let’s glance through Cristiano Ronaldo’s goal-scoring journey in FIFA World Cups so far.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s World Cup debut in 2006
A young Cristiano Ronaldo, already recognised as one of the prodigies of world football, was picked for the 2006 FIFA World Cup under the captaincy of the legendary Luis Figo.
Wearing the No. 17 shirt, Ronaldo made his FIFA World Cup debut against Angola. He got a yellow card in the 26th minute and was withdrawn after an hour.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s first FIFA World Cup goal came in the next match against Iran. He converted a penalty in the 80th minute to give Portugal a 2-0 win.
It made Ronaldo the youngest Portuguese player to score in a FIFA World Cup match at 21 years and 132 days.
Cristiano Ronaldo did not play Portugal’s final group match against Mexico and in the round of 16, he had to be substituted early in a tense 1-0 win over the Netherlands.
In the quarter-finals, Portugal played out a 0-0 draw with England and in the shootout, Ronaldo scored the winning penalty to send his country to the semis.
Portugal went on to lose to France and Germany to finish fourth and Cristiano Ronaldo ended with a solitary goal in his maiden FIFA World Cup campaign.
Captain of the ship in 2010
By the time the next FIFA World Cup came around in four years, Cristiano Ronaldo had won the Ballon D’Or and the UEFA Champions League and earned a move to his dream club, Real Madrid.
Moreover, he inherited the No. 7 jersey and the Portugal captaincy from Luis Figo.
However, in their four matches, Portugal scored in just one, a 7-0 thrashing of North Korea, where Cristiano Ronaldo scored a scrappy sixth goal and assisted in another.
Portugal were knocked out after a 1-0 loss to eventual champions Spain.
Injury derails 2014 campaign
Cristiano Ronaldo ensured Portugal made the 2014 FIFA World Cup with a scintillating hat-trick in a 3-2 win over Sweden in the qualifiers.
However, the Portuguese star sustained an injury prior to the World Cup and did not arrive at the tournament in the best shape.
As a result, Portugal suffered, losing 4-0 to Germany in their first match, drawing 2-2 with the USA in their second, with Cristiano Ronaldo providing the assist for the equaliser.
Ronaldo scored a late winner for Portugal in their 2-1 win over Ghana in their final group game but it was not enough for the team to go past the group stages.
Hat-trick hero in 2018
In Portugal’s first match of the 2018 FIFA World Cup against Spain, Cristiano Ronaldo had one of his most memorable games for Portugal.
Ronaldo scored a fourth-minute penalty to give his team the lead and scored again before half-time to give them a 2-1 lead after Diego Costa equalised. However, quick goals from Diego Costa and Nacho Fernandez gave Spain a 3-2 lead.
With the game on the line, Cristiano Ronaldo lined up a free-kick and curved his shot around the wall in the 88th minute to complete a brilliant hat-trick and rescue a point for Portugal.
It made Cristiano Ronaldo the oldest player to score a hat-trick in FIFA World Cup history.
Cristiano Ronaldo went on to score the winner in a 1-0 win over Morocco and played in the 1-1 draw with Iran. Portugal went to the round of 16, where they lost 2-1 to Uruguay.
Ronaldo ends FIFA World Cup 2022 with one goal
Cristiano Ronaldo became the first male football player to score in five different World Cups when he netted a penalty in Portugal’s 3-2 win against Ghana in their opening match of FIFA World Cup 2022. It made Ronaldo, 37, one of the oldest goal-scorers in FIFA World Cup history. It also turned out to be his only goal at Qatar 2022.
Ronaldo was substituted in the next two games. He didn’t make the starting XI in a major tournament for the first time since 2008 in the match against Switzerland. Portugal’s campaign ended in the quarter-finals against Morocco where Ronaldo only came on as a substitute later.
Overall, Cristiano Ronaldo has eight goals and two assists in FIFA World Cups, all in the group stages.
Has Cristiano Ronaldo won the World Cup?
Cristiano Ronaldo has never won a FIFA World Cup. Throughout his career he has won an incredible number of team and individual honours, but he has yet to get his hands on the game’s most famous trophy — and his 2022 campaign has ended in failure again.
Success with Portugal took 13 years to arrive for Ronaldo, who made his debut in a 1-0 win over Kazakhstan in August 2003 and went on to help his country to a first major tournament title when they triumphed at Euro 2016.
Ronaldo described Portugal’s Euro 2016 victory as “one of the happiest moments in my career” and “an amazing unique moment for all Portuguese”.
The ex-Manchester United forward has admitted that he expects Qatar to be his final World Cup, given that he’ll be 41 by the time the 2026 edition rolls around.
Has Cristiano Ronaldo played in a World Cup final?
Cristiano Ronaldo has played in a World Cup semifinal, but he has never reached the final itself.
At the 2006 World Cup in Germany, where Ronaldo made his debut in the tournament, Portugal enjoyed a superb campaign, progressing through the group stage with three wins and then beating England to earn a semifinal against France.
Ronaldo scored the winning penalty in Portugal’s shoot-out victory over England to send the Selecao into the semifinals, where a Zinedine Zidane penalty was enough to earn France victory and end Portugal’s best run in the competition since 1966.
At the age of 21, Ronaldo had his whole career ahead of him and he would go on to win more honours than almost any other player in the game.
But World Cup glory has always escaped him.
Cristiano Ronaldo World Cup matches, goals
Although he is Portugal’s most-capped player at the World Cup, Cristiano Ronaldo’s five tournaments have all ended in disappointment.
As Portugal’s all-time leading goalscorer, he will be personally disappointed not to have scored more goals at the World Cup finals. His tally of eight puts him behind Portugal legend Eusebio, who netted nine goals in just one tournament in 1966.
All of Ronaldo’s World Cup goals have so far been scored in the group stages. He scored one in each group stage of the 2006, 2010, 2014 and 2022 tournaments, and four in the group stage at the 2018 World Cup.
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