Did Cristiano Ronaldo claim the all-time goalscoring record with Man United hat-trick?

The 59th treble of his career moved the Portuguese forward to 807 goals, possibly more than Bican's tally

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Cristiano Ronaldo stole the show at Old Trafford on Saturday evening after his hat-trick led Manchester United to a 3-2 Premier League victory over Tottenham Hotspur - and the Portuguese great might have etched his name in the history books as football's all-time leading goalscorer.

Ronaldo's treble moved him on to 807 career goals, two ahead of Austro-Czech Josef Bican's 805 between 1931 and 1955. While Fifa does not keep an official record, the world governing body estimates that Bican had held the record, but the Czech FA has said that Bican's total was actually 821 goals following a review of his statistics.

Brazilian strikers Pele and Romario each scored more than 1,000 goals during their careers, but those statistics include amateur, unofficial and friendly matches.

Ronaldo's 12th-minute opener at Old Trafford was a superb strike from distance that helped him equal the Fifa-based record.

The Portugal international then went past Bican with a tap in from Jadon Sancho's neat pass to put United 2-1 in front before powerfully heading home his third to spark wild celebrations in the stands as United won 3-2.

It was the 59th treble of Ronaldo's career and his first for United since 2008 following his return.

"Tremendously happy with my first hat-trick since I came back to Old Trafford!" Ronaldo wrote on Instagram. "Nothing beats the feeling of being back on the pitch and helping the team with goals and effort."

Teammate Paul Pogba reflected on Ronaldo's big day, saying: "He has never been a problem. You have the best striker in history in our team, it cannot be a problem. Today he showed why he is Cristiano Ronaldo. The performance from him and all the team was very brilliant."

Ronaldo's goals have been scored for Sporting, United, Real Madrid, Juventus and the Portugal national team. Ronaldo is way ahead as Real Madrid's all-time goalscorer with 450 from just 438 games, 127 clear of second-placed Raul, while he is the first player in history to score more than 100 goals for three clubs, achieved with United, Madrid, and Juventus.

Updated: March 13, 2022, 4:27 AM
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