Cristiano Ronaldo has reached 100 Premier League goals after netting for Manchester United against Arsenal at Emirates Stadium.
The 37-year-old bought up his Premier League century over 19 years after his debut in the competition when he swept home from Nemanja Matic’s cross.
Ronaldo’s goal hauled United back into the contest after they had found themselves 2-0 down following goals from Nuno Tavares and Bukayo Saka.
It came at the end of a difficult week for Ronaldo, who confirmed the loss of his baby son on Monday and subsequently missed United’s defeat to Liverpool a day later.
Having hit all of those goals in United colours, Ronaldo becomes just the fourth player to reach the landmark for the club, along with former team-mates Wayne Rooney, Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) April 23, 2022
Ronaldo has now scored 16 league goals since returning to Old Trafford despite the team enduring a frustrating season overall.
The United great had already tallied up 84 goals in the competition before departing for Real Madrid in 2009, with his finest goalscoring campaign coming in 2007-08 as the Red Devils lifted the Premier League and Champions League trophies.
Having scored 31 goals in that outstanding campaign, he remains one of just five players to hit 30 goals in a single Premier League season, alongside Alan Shearer, Andy Cole, Luis Suarez, and Mohamed Salah.
Despite United underwhelming this season, Ronaldo has continued to make history since returning to the club.
The Portuguese forward scored twice on his second debut for the club against Newcastle United last September, 12 years and 124 days after recording his last Premier League goal in May 2009, the second-longest gap between two strikes by any player in the competition’s history (after Matt Jackson’s gap of 13 years and 187 days between 1993 and 2006).
4 – Since the 2003-04 season, @Cristiano is one of four players to score 100+ goals in two of Europe’s big-five leagues (LaLiga, Premier League), along with Edinson Cavani (Ligue 1, Serie A), Gonzalo Higuaín (LaLiga, Serie A) and Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Ligue 1, Serie A). Centurions.
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) April 23, 2022
Ronaldo has also hit two hat-tricks in the competition since turning 37 in February, in 3-2 wins over Tottenham and Norwich City. Those displays made him just the third player aged 37 or over to hit multiple goals in a Premier League game after Teddy Sheringham and Graham Alexander, and just the second to do so more than once (Alexander also twice).
He is one of just four players to score at least 100 goals in two of Europe’s big five leagues, having also reached the landmark for Real Madrid in LaLiga. United team-mate Edinson Cavani (Ligue 1, Serie A), Gonzalo Higuain (LaLiga, Serie A) and Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Ligue 1, Serie A) are the others on that exclusive list.
While Ronaldo’s future could become unclear if United miss out on a top-four finish, the striker will be looking to carry his fine goalscoring form into what will surely be his final World Cup appearance in Qatar later this year.
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