Goncalo Ramos, 21, was the star of the show for Portugal, scoring the first hat-trick of the 2022 World Cup against Switzerland in the Round of 16 on Tuesday. Replacing Portugal’s talisman, Cristiano Ronaldo, Ramos became the first player to score a hat-trick scored on his first World Cup start since Miroslav Klose for Germany in 2002. He also became the youngest man to score a hat-trick in a FIFA World Cup knockout match after Pele as well as the first man to score a hat-trick in a World Cup knockout match since 1990.
His first goal came out of nowhere, as Ramos made a clever touch down the right side of the box to play the ball into his path, and despite a tight angle, the ball past Yann Sommer’s near post into the roof of the net. For his second goal, Dalot found space on the right after he passed his marker and fizzled a cross to the ground, cleverly clicked between Sommer’s legs by Ramos.
For his hat-trick, Bernardo Silva’s won the ball high up the pitch, which was picked up by Joao Felix whose clever through ball was picked up by Ramos with an even smarter finish, who thought him over Sommer.
Ronaldo came on as a substitute in the 72nd minute to loud cheers, although Portugal had already completed the game by then with defenders Pepe and Raphael Guerreiro also scoring. Rafael Leao scored a late goal in stoppage time.
Manuel Akanji scored for Switzerland. Portugal is through to the quarter-finals for the third time after 1966 and 2006 and will play against Morocco on Saturday. Portugal coach Fernando Santos must now decide whether to stay with Ramos or reinstate Ronaldo, the top scorer in international men’s football and one of the greatest players ever.