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Cristiano Ronaldo creates history by becoming the first player to score in five different FIFA World Cups

Cristiano Ronaldo added yet another illustrious note to his already glittering career following his goal from the penalty spot against Ghana in Portugal’s FIFA World Cup 2022 opener at Stadium 974. 

Ronaldo’s second-half goal saw him becoming the first player in football history to score in five different FIFA World Cups as he has now found the back of the net in the 2006, 2010, 2014, 2018, and 2022 editions.

There was plenty of controversy and speculation surrounding Ronaldo heading into this fixture. Only a couple of days ago, Manchester United had decided to release him from his contract following his scathing indictment of the club in his interview with Piers Morgan.

“Cristiano Ronaldo is to leave Manchester United by mutual agreement, with immediate effect,” said Manchester United.

“The club thanks him for his immense contribution across two spells at Old Trafford, scoring 145 goals in 346 appearances and wishes him and his family well for the future.

“Everyone at Manchester United remains focused on continuing the team’s progress under Erik ten Hag and working together to deliver success on the pitch.”

Despite being one of the biggest stars and celebrities on the planet and possessing the same appeal and popularity, Ronaldo is no longer the footballer he once was at the age of 37. There’s a reason why Manchester United manager Ten Hag has used him only sparingly this season, and mostly off the bench.

Those reasons were on display in the first hour of the contest between Portugal and Ghana as well. The Portugal captain could’ve added two goals inside the first 15 minutes, but ended up missing both the opportunities. The second of those was a gilt-edged chance created from a quick turnover in possession up the pitch, and an incisive pass. However, Ronaldo’s heavy first touch meant that he was unable to bring the ball under control and it got saved by the keeper.

The 37-year-old also found the back of the net just after the half-hour mark but the goal ruled out as he was adjudged to have committed a foul on the opposition defender in the build-up to it.

Ronaldo finally broke the deadlock in the 65th minute of the game when he went down in the box after making contact with Mohammed Salisu. 

The referee pointed straight to the spot and even though the penalty call was soft, Ronaldo converted it smoothly from 12 yards to become the first male player in history to score at five World Cups – a feat Brazilian striker Marta became the first player to achieve back in 2019.