Ronaldo's hat trick keeps Portugal near top of Group A

by 24britishtvOct. 12, 2021, 11 p.m. 16
-

Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates after scoring his side's second goal from the penalty spot during the World Cup 2022 group A qualifying soccer match between Portugal and Luxembourg at the Algarve stadium outside Faro, Portugal, Tuesday, Oct. 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Joao Matos)

Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates after scoring his side's second goal from the penalty spot during the World Cup 2022 group A qualifying soccer match between Portugal and Luxembourg at the Algarve stadium outside Faro, Portugal, Tuesday, Oct. 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Joao Matos)

FARO, Portugal (AP) — Cristiano Ronaldo scored his 10th international hat trick as Portugal cruised past Luxembourg 5-0 in World Cup qualifying on Tuesday to stay close to group leader Serbia.

Serbia kept a one-point cushion at the top of Group A by defeating last-place Azerbaijan 3-1 at home. It has 17 points, one more than Portugal, which has a game in hand.

Serbia’s last game is at Portugal in November. Portugal, which has won four in a row in qualifying, will play at Ireland before the decisive match against the Serbians.

It was the 58th career hat trick for club and country for Ronaldo, who took his record scoring tally to 115 international goals by converting two early penalty kicks and finding the net again near the end. Bruno Fernandes and João Palhinha also scored for Portugal.

“We had three final lefts and we succeeded in this one,” said Portugal goalkeeper Rui Patrício, who made his 100th appearance with the national team. “Two to go now.”

Bernardo Silva was fouled to prompt the first penalty in the eighth minute, while Ronaldo himself was brought down inside the area before converting the second penalty in the 13th. He had to retake it, though, after André Silva entered the area too early.

Ronaldo also struck the post a few minutes later, and in the 18th Fernandes added to the lead after being set up by Bernardo Silva.

Palhinha scored the fourth in the 69th, moments after Ronaldo came close with a bicycle kick that was saved by Luxembourg goalkeeper Anthony Moris.

Ronaldo completed his hat trick in the 87th to reach 25 goals in his last 16 World Cup qualifying matches

Serbia defeated Azerbaijan with a pair of goals by Dusan Vlahovic and another by substitute Dusan Tadic.

Vlahovic opened the scoring by converting a 30th-minute penalty and added his second in the 53rd.

Emin Makhmudov scored for winless Azerbaijan in first-half injury time after a blunder by Serbia goalkeeper Predrag Rajkovic while trying to clear the ball from the area, and Tadic sealed the victory for the hosts with another penalty in the 83rd.

Azerbaijan has only one point from seven matches.

-

Related Articles

HOT TRENDS

Matt Hancock's United Nations role withdrawn

by 24britishtvOct. 16, 2021, 2 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

4 Liverpool players who must perform for Reds to win vs Watford today

by 24britishtvOct. 16, 2021, 2 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

Newcastle v Tottenham: match preview

by 24britishtvOct. 16, 2021, noon2
HOT TRENDS

Sir Michael Caine says he's retiring from acting after next role

by 24britishtvOct. 16, 2021, 11 a.m.2
HOT TRENDS

First Doctor Who: Flux Trailer Reveals Jodie Whittaker's Final Season

by 24britishtvOct. 16, 2021, 7 a.m.2
HOT TRENDS

Foreign lorry drivers to be allowed to make more UK deliveries

by 24britishtvOct. 16, 2021, 7 a.m.2
HOT TRENDS

Does You's Theo actor Dylan Arnold have a girlfriend?

by 24britishtvOct. 16, 2021, 3 a.m.2
HOT TRENDS

UK ministers face questions over firm linked to suspected Covid test errors

by 24britishtvOct. 15, 2021, 11:40 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

Doctor Who: Jodie Whittaker already filmed regeneration scene

by 24britishtvOct. 15, 2021, 11:40 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

Grant hits winner as Albion beat Blues

by 24britishtvOct. 15, 2021, 11:01 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

First look at Vigil's Suranne Jones and Adam James on Gogglebox

by 24britishtvOct. 15, 2021, 9:40 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

How 'Halloween Kills' fits in to Peacock's streaming strategy

by 24britishtvOct. 15, 2021, 9:40 p.m.2
HOT TRENDS

You season 3's twist ending explained

by 24britishtvOct. 15, 2021, 9:40 p.m.2