The Portuguese footballing icon ensured yet another record was broken by him as Ronaldo continues his pursuit to be widely recognised as the greatest player of all time
Cristiano Ronaldo now stands alone as the first player in football history to achieve 800 career goals – a ludicrous feat that has not been matched by anyone past or present.
Ronaldo put Manchester United 2-1 up against Arsenal at Old Trafford to reach the remarkable milestone with a typically cool finish into the bottom corner after finding space inside the box.
Typically, he made it 801 just a few minutes later with a powerful penalty to restore a 3-2 lead for his side after being pegged back.
The 36-year-old’s desire to be acknowledged by all as the greatest player to ever lace up a pair of boots is well-documented and with this feat, few could argue he hasn’t already achieved his aim.
Few in attendance that day could have predicted that goal would go on to be the first of 800, but such is Ronaldo’s overwhelming confidence he may have had an inkling.
While his exploits during his first stint at Manchester United and a nine-year stay at Real Madrid are common knowledge, it is important to highlight just how staggering Ronaldo has performed over the last 12 months given any normal player of his age would be showing signs of entering the twilight of their career.
It is abundantly clear Ronaldo is no normal player – instead, a goal-scoring machine who devotes every inch of himself to prolonging an already illustrious career.
He does so with good reason, he clearly still has the edge of over just about every player in world football, outscoring many elite talents a number of years his junior.
From 2018 to the summer of 2021 Ronaldo plied his trade for Italian giants Juventus in a move that many dubbed underwhelming upon his departure from Turin.
This stemmed from Juventus making little secret of the fact they had signed Ronaldo with the main objective of securing the Champions League – something they failed to do during his three years at the club.
That is not to say his own showings were underwhelming however, in fact far from it as Ronaldo notched 101 goals in 134 appearances for the Old Lady.
He secured the Serie A golden boot in his final season, before sealing a triumphant return to the club where he first announced himself on the world stage.
Not to be outdone by his long-time Ballon d’Or rival Lionel Messi, who also switched clubs in the summer, Ronaldo sparked headlines worldwide after his return to Old Trafford was confirmed.
The second coming of Ronaldo, along with the signings of Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane, led to sincere optimism from the Old Trafford faithful that the eight-year wait for a title could come to an end.
Instead, humiliating defeats to closest rivals Liverpool and Man City have all but quashed the hopes of even United’s most hopeful supporters.
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Due to the rock-bottom morale that currently shrouds United’s Carrington training base, Ronaldo’s stunning individual displays have potentially gone under the radar.
Nine goals and one assist in 12 appearances during his second-stint at the club, Ronaldo’s tendency to notch last-gasp winners has often bailed out his teammates faltering performances – particularly in the Champions League.
A competition that is synonymous with Ronaldo’s genius, the 36-year-old has only increased his lead at the top of the competitions all-time scoring charts since coming back to United, notching five goals in four European outings.
As Ronaldo surpasses the 800-goal mark, the debate will forever rage on surrounding who the best player of all-time is – but there is little debate over the best goal-scorer.