Rewriting history in the beautiful game for the umpteenth time on Wednesday, Cristiano Ronaldo became the first player to feature at six European Championships tournaments. Ronaldo started for Portugal in its UEFA Euro 2024 opener against the Czech Republic at the Red Bull Arena. The 39-year-old earned his first cap for Portugal at the Euros in the 2004 edition. The former Real Madrid and Manchester United icon was a part of the Luis Figo-led side that made it to the final of the 2004 edition.

Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo kisses the ball during the match(REUTERS)

Years after the heartbreaking defeat to giant killers Greece, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner ended Portugal’s long wait for the Euro title in 2016. Ronaldo guided Portugal to its first-ever European title in the 2016 edition. Recording his 208th appearance for Portugal at the UEFA Euros, the Al-Nassr forward is already a proud holder of multiple records in the European Championships.

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Most capped

Ronaldo has missed just one game for Portugal in his side’s last six Euros. Portugal played its final group game against Switzerland without Ronaldo in 2008. He has made the most final appearances at the European Championships. Nicknamed CR7, Ronaldo has played 26 games for the former champions at the Euros. The former Juventus striker is followed by JoΓ£o Moutinho and Pepe. Ronaldo has over 65-plus appearances (including qualifying) at the Euros – the most by any player.

Most goals

With 14 strikes to his name, Ronaldo has the most European Championship goals. Ronaldo has netted 25 goals more than Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who is the second-highest goal-getter in the Euros (including qualifying). CR7 is the first and only player to score 50 goals in Euro qualifying and finals. Ibrahimovic found the back of the net on 25 occasions. Former Republic of Ireland skipper Robbie Keane netted 23 goals at the Euros.

Only one to…

If Portugal enter the final of the UEFA Euro 2024, Ronaldo can become the oldest player to headline the summit clash. Ronaldo shattered Gianluigi Buffon’s record when CR7 became the most-capped player at the Euros in 2021. Ronaldo is the only player to score three or more goals in multiple European Championships. The Portugal captain netted twice in his debut campaign. The all-time leading scorer in international football scored only once at the Euro 2008. CR7 smashed three goals each in the 2012 and 2016 editions. Ronaldo became the first player to net five goals in a single edition at the UEFA Euro 2020. With goals in 2004, 2008, 2012, 2016, and 2020 editions, only Ronaldo scored in five UEFA Euro campaigns.

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