If there is anyone with a voracious spirit and appetite to never stop competing, it is Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro. This is a relief for Portugal, as CR7's drive has been key in helping them qualify for their eighth FIFA World Cup.
Portugal's road to Qatar 2022 was more turbulent than expected: after missing out on a direct ticket in Group A of the European Qualifiers, taken by Serbia, they had to fight to the death against Turkey and surprise package North Macedonia to secure qualification.
At 37 years of age, the current Manchester United player is aware that Qatar 2022 could be his last World Cup at full fitness (although only CR7 would be able to play the World Cup 2026 with the vitality of a 30-year-old). Having helped Portugal to conquer its spot in Qatar 2022, Cristiano would have the chance to match or break the following records, a dish that the Madeira native loves to devour.
Cristiano Ronaldo's statistics so far in the FIFA World Cup history
Ronaldo has followed the path of a true legend in the World Cups, having played his first World Cup at just 19 years of age. Since then, he has played in Germany 2006, South Africa 2010, Brazil 2014, and Russia 2018. This has been enough for him to get, so far, great numbers that he will seek to increase in Qatar 2022.
Cristiano boasts 17 appearances in FIFA World Cup matches. With the exception of Portugal's match against Mexico in the group stage of Germany 2006, the Real Madrid legend has played in all the matches his National Team has played in the World Cups he has attended.
Regarding CR7's specialty, being present in the opponent's goal, he has a decent amount of goals in the FIFA World Cups: 7 (1 in Germany 2006, 1 in South Africa 2010, 1 in Brazil 2014, and 4 in Russia 2018). As for the assists he has provided, he has only 2 (2010 and 2014).
The records Cristiano Ronaldo could match or break in the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022
As previously stated, Qatar 2022 will most likely be the last World Cup in which Cristiano Ronaldo will either play or be at an elite level of fitness. If injuries respect him, as has been a constant throughout his career, due to his strict diet and meticulous physical preparation, the Portuguese ace will attempt to match or break the following records.
Join the select group of players with the highest number of World Cups played
By stepping on a Qatar 2022 pitch in a World Cup match, Cristiano would join Antonio Carbajal, Lothar Matthaüs, and Rafael Márquez in the group of players with five World Cups played. Along with him, Lionel Messi, Andres Guardado, and others could share this honor.
The Portuguese with the highest number of goals scored in World Cups
This honor belongs to the great Eusebio da Silva Ferreira who scored 9 goals in the only FIFA World Cup he played in, England 1966. Cristiano would need two goals to tie his record and three to break it and sit down on the throne all alone.
The Portuguese with the most goals scored in a single World Cup match
If the stars align in Qatar 2022, Cristiano could have the game of his life in World Cups and score 4 goals to tie the record of Eusebio, who scored that many goals in the England 1966 Quarter-Finals against North Korea. CR7 came within one goal of doing so at Russia 2018 when he scored 3 against Spain in a Group Stage match.
The player with the most games as captain in World Cups
Ronaldo is looking to match a true legend of the sport, the late Diego Armando Maradona, who played 16 of his 21 World Cup matches as captain of Argentina. The Portuguese would need his national team to reach the Quarterfinals, and not miss a single game, to match Diego. Since 2010, every Portugal game in World Cups has had Cristiano wearing the captain's badge.
The Portuguese with the most assists in World Cups
Luis Filipe Madeira Caeiro, Luis Figo has 10 appearances in the FIFA World Cup (Korea Japan 2002 and Germany 2006) but no goals. However, he has contributed with 5 assists (1 in 2002 and 4 in 2006) to become the Portuguese player with the most assists given in this tournament. Cristiano Ronaldo has focused more on scoring than on assisting, but if he achieves to give 3 more, he could match Figo. (He has never been able to assist more than once per World Cup).
The most booked player in World Cups
Javier Mascherano holds this negative record by accumulating 7 yellow cards in 20 games played along 4 different editions of the FIFA World Cup (2006, 2010, 2014, and 2018). Cristiano Ronaldo is well known for his constant pressure on the referee. If he gets booked 3 more times he could match the retired Argentinian midfielder (this will need Portugal to play at least 5 games, i.e, Quarter Finals, in Qatar 2022).