Goncalo Ramos was in the form of his life on Tuesday night as he scored the first trio of goals of the 2022 World Cup(Pele like). A hattrick is a very tough result to deliver, a backbreaking task to accomplish, and an arduous feat to achieve. Bagging a triplicity of goals is no easy task, moreso, is it to achieve in a World Cup match. Till date, there have been 53 hat-tricks at a FIFA World Cup finals match. These hat-tricks have been scored by 49 players(including Goncalo Ramos) whilst 19 of these 49 players have bagged these magical trey of goals in the knock-out stages of planet earth’s most watched sports competition.
But perhaps the name that would be reverberating in the ears of many is that of the man, Goncalo Ramos, the latest player to score a hattrick and the first at Qatar 2022.
Ramos scored a beautiful hattrick against Switzerland on Tuesday night to help his country advance to the quarter-finals of the 2022 World Cup.
Fernando Santos’ decision to start the Benfica man in Ronaldo’s stead paid handsomely as Ramos was at the epicenter of a flurry of Portuguese goals, the Selecao’s largest World Cup win since thrashing North Korea 7-0 in the 2010 group stages.
The forward did get very little playing time in the first two games of Portugal’s World Cup campaign, coming on as a substitute for Ronaldo in the 88th minute against Ghana and in the 82nd minute against Uruguay but was given the nod to start in the Round of 16 clash.
It took Ramos 74 minutes on the pitch to impress Santos, pulling a real master stroke. Tonight’s rout against the Swiss side engraves his name amongst some of the greatest to ever play the FIFA World Cup and by extension the sports of football
Ramos’ enthralling stunt against Switzerland makes him the fifth youngest player ever to score three goals in a single World cup game, the Benfica man aged 21 years and and 170 days on the night of the Swiss annihilation.
The only four players who have done it at a younger age are:
4. Florian Albert(1941-2011)
Aged 20 years and 262 days.
Florian Albert was born in Hercegszántó, Hungary. Nicknamed “The Emperor”, he spent his entire club career at Hungarian side, Ferencvarosi TC. Albert starred in the 1962 World Cup in Chile, scoring a hattrick for his nation against Bulgaria on the 3rd of July in a 6-1 win in the group stages. He scored five goals, tying with five other players for the Golden Boot Award and was also named the Best Young Player of the Tournament.
3. Bert Patenaude(1909 – 1974)
Aged 20 years, 256 days. Born in Massachusetts, the American was the first ever football player to score a World cup hattrick, at the inaugural edition of the tournament in 1930 hosted in Montevideo, Uruguay in which USA defeated Paraguay 3-0. He scored a total of five World Cup goals at the competition, and by extension a total of five goals at any World Cup(as he played for his country only in 1930), the highest by an American soccer player till Landon Donovan equalled his record at South Africa 2010.
2. Edmund Conen(1914-1990)
Aged 19 years, 199 days. The German forward was born in Urzig, Germany. He scored the fifth World Cup hattrick at the 1934 World Cup in Italy in the Round of 16 for Germany against Belgium. The Germans won 5-2. Behind Oldřich Nejedlý of Czechoslovakia who scored five goals, he was joint-second highest scorer alongside Angelo Schiavio of Italy.
Born on 23rd of October, Edson Arantes do Nascimento is the youngest player to ever score a World cup hattrick. Aged 17 years, 244 days, the then-Brazilian prodigy scored a hattrick against France in the semi-finals of the 1958 World Cup in Sweden. Prior to his hattrick, the Brazilians were leading 2-1. Brazil went on to win the World Cup five days later, defeating Sweden 5-2 in the final, a match in which Pele scored a brace, making him the youngest player to play in the final as well as win the FIFA World Cup aged 17 years and 249 days.
To date, Pele remains the youngest player to play at a World Cup match, the youngest to play a World Cup final, the youngest to score in the final, the youngest to win a World Cup, the only player to win three World Cups.
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Goncalo Ramos taking after Eusebio
Ramos also looks to be treading a path similar to Portugal legend, Eusebio’s. Inarguably one of the greatest names in Portuguese football(only maybe Cristiano Ronaldo is bigger), the legend remains the all time top scorer for Benfica(which happens to be Ramos’ current club) till date, with 473 goals in 440 competitive games
56 years ago, The Black Panther made a huge name for himself at the 1966 World Cup, scoring nine goals at the tournament, with Portugal finishing third. This outstanding tally ranks as the fourth highest number of goals scored at a World Cup, tying with Brazil’s Ademir(9 goals at the 1950 World Cup), behind France’s Just Fontaine’s (who scored a record 13 at the 1958 edition) and Hungary’s Sandor Kocsis(11 in 1954)
It remains to be seen how Ramos builds on such a huge reputation and name he’s already earned for himself by such genius but it’s definitely hoped he can continue to pave his way and live out a really illustrious career on the pitch
Go, Goncalo Ramos!
Main image credit Embed from Getty Images