Published: Sat, November 16, 2019
Sport | By

Ronaldo bags hat-trick, closes on 100 goals in Portugal rout

Ronaldo bags hat-trick, closes on 100 goals in Portugal rout

Euro 2020 Qualifier - Group B - Portugal v Lithuania - Estadio Algarve, Faro, Portugal - November 14, 2019 Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo scores their sixth goal to complete his hat-trick.

Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo scored another hat-trick, moving closer to 100 worldwide goals, as he led the European champions to a 6-0 drubbing over Lithuania in their Euro 2020 qualifier on Thursday.

The defending champions, however, were left waiting to confirm their place at next year's finals after Serbia beat Luxemburg 3-2.

Portugal sit second in the standings behind Ukraine, who have already qualified, and one point clear of Serbia, but can secure their spot at next year's finals with victory in Luxembourg on Sunday.

The treble against Lithuania brings Ronaldo to a staggering 96 goals for Portugal.

A brace against Luxembourg would see Ronaldo become only the second man to reach 100 goals after Ali Daei, who holds the record for most global goals.

Coach Fernando Santos declared that he never had any doubts about Portugal's most-capped player.

The former Real Madrid player justified the Portuguese player's actions: "His team mates know the desire to succeed that he has, I don't think it is not necessary to ask for forgiveness or give so much importance to what happened". Other people did, but I didn't have any doubts'.

Lithuania paid for more sloppiness 15 minutes later as they lost the ball in midfield and Paciencia slipped the ball quickly to Ronaldo who produced a wicked, dipping first-time shot which flew past the bemused Setkus from 25 meters.

Pizzi scored in the 52nd, Paciencia added to the lead in the 56th and Silva got on the board in the 63rd.

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