Cristiano Ronaldo notched up two unique record during Portugal's Euro 2020 match against Hungary, which the defending champions won 3-0.
Cristiano Ronaldo notched up two unique record during Portugal’s Euro 2020 match against Hungary. The Portuguese superstar became the first man to appear in five separate iterations of the European Championship. Ronaldo’s maiden appearance in the Euros came in 2004, when Portugal were runners-up to Greece. Since then, he’s played the Euros in 2008, 2012, 2016 and now 2020. Portugal also come into the tournament as defending champions. They beat France in the final in 2016 and will be keen to defend their title this time around. But they are in a tough group; fans have not dubbed Group F the ‘group of death’ for nothing.
Portugal’s start to their title defence began with a 3-0 win. In front of a capacity crowd in the Ferenc Puskas Stadium in Budapest, Hungary fought hard but in the end Portugal proved to be too much.
However, the appearances record wasn’t the only record Ronaldo broke. He also became the top goalscorer in Euros history. The previous record was held by France’s Michel Platini with 9 goals.
Ronaldo converted a penalty to become the first player to score 10 goals in the history of the competition. He then added a second a few minutes later, taking his tally to 11.
Prior to that, the game had been largely dull and was looking likely to end in a 0-0 draw. However, left-back Raphael Guerrero opened the scoring for Portugal in the 84th minute.
That seemingly broke the home team’s spirit. To make matters worse, prior to Portugal scoring the Hungarians had the ball in the back of the net. But the goal was ruled out for offside, much to the chagrin of the fans and players alike.
The win means Portugal go into their next two matches with less pressure on their backs. And that’s a good thing because their next two matches seem them take on France and Germany.
Amusingly, Ronaldo was stopped by a security official to have his identity checked before the game. Maybe the gesture was down to the fact that Ronaldo was masked. Or maybe the guard decided to be extra thorough.
The official at the Puskas Arena in Budapest asked to see the credentials of one of the world’s most famous and identifiable sports stars as he walked toward Portugal’s dressing room.
The official carefully checked both sides of the plastic lanyard and then ushered a mask-wearing Ronaldo on his way.
Ronaldo politely complied and raised his eyebrows a little as he walked on.
Yet if that moment when largely unnoticed, the Hungarian crowd certainly didn’t. The first nearly-full stadium at Euro 2020 gave Hungary some loud support.
Portugal played Hungary at the 67,215-capacity in front of a full house. It is the only stadium at this year’s tournament to allow a full capacity amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The Hungarian fans bellowed out the national anthem and then broke out into loud chanting and slow-clapping in a bid to encourage their team before the game.
Hungary’s most vocal support congregated behind one of the goals. Portugal’s red-shirted and flag-waving followers filled a small section behind where their goalkeeper started the match.
Sadly it wasn’t enough to get their team over the line against a quality Portugal side.