Ronaldo: Always believed in hat-trick

Cristiano Ronaldo says he ‘always believed’ he would score a hat-trick against Spain after his last-gasp free kick for Portugal.

“It’s the fruits of many years’ hard work. I’ve always believed in myself,” said the Real Madrid star after Friday’s World Cup opener, which ended 3-3.

“We never dropped our heads. Spain had their chances, but the result was good for us.

“The team deserve credit. We played with faith and sacrifice. We played against one of the favourites and we had to do things well.

“I’m very happy, it’s my first hat-trick at a World Cup. We drew with a favourite to win the World Cup. We’re happy because we managed to draw at the end.

“Our next games? The World Cup has just begun. Our first objective is to pass the group stage and then we’ll see.

“We’re candidates but not favourites. The team are fine and we’ll be fine.”

Tags 2018 World Cup Cristiano Ronaldo Portugal Spain