Cristiano Ronaldo Doesn’t Start World Cup Match Against Switzerland, Replacement Nets Hat Trick, Portugal Wins 6-1

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In a shocking turn of events, Portuguese star Cristiano Ronaldo was benched for his team’s match with Switzerland Tuesday. To rub salt in the wound, his replacement — Goncalo Ramos — scored not once, not twice, but three times from Ronaldo’s usual striker spot.

No other player had recorded a three-goal game in this year’s World Cup prior to Ramos.

Ronaldo, who is 37, had started all three group stage matches for Portugal. He knocked home a penalty kick in the opening match against Ghana, contributing to a 3-2 Portuguese win.

That made him the first men’s player ever to score in five World Cups.

But he was clearly angry about being subbed off during the team’s third match against South Korea.

Portugal lost 2-1, but the scoreline was mostly irrelevant as they were already through to the knockout round.

His displeasure reflected a broader attitude problem however, with Fox News quoting his coach expressing frustration.

“I didn’t like it, not at all. I really didn’t like it,” Santos said. “We fixed that in-house and that’s it.”

That didn’t seem to be it, however, as Ronaldo wasn’t named to the starting eleven Tuesday.

He didn’t hide his frustration walking into the stadium.

Ronaldo’s frequently been in the news of late, as he recently parted ways with his club team, Manchester United.

READ: CRISTIANO RONALDO AND MANCHESTER UNITED MUTUALLY PART WAYS

Rumors have been also been flying about him potentially signing a massive deal with a Saudi Arabian club.

Cristiano Ronaldo benched Switzerland World Cup
Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal watches his teammates prepare for their match against Switzerland, a match that Ronaldo did not start. (Photo by Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images)

Ronaldo’s Shocking Omission

While he’s no longer the world’s best player, Ronaldo is still a goal-scoring force to be reckoned with.

A similar decision would be not starting someone like Tom Brady in the playoffs because of attitude issues and a couple slightly subpar — to his high standards — recent performances.

Quarterbacks have more of a direct impact on the game than forwards in soccer, but there’s no doubt he’s still one of Portugal’s best options.

Switzerland conceded just one goal to the high flying Brazilian team, so benching your most accomplished player is a stunning decision.

Attitude problems have become so significant with Ronaldo that his team is willing to risk going home to teach him a lesson.

British commentator and former player Gary Nevill also said he needs to fix his mindset, according to the Daily Mail.

“There are a lot of fans of Cristiano Ronaldo that aren’t willing to tell him the truth and I think that he does need to listen to the truth and it’s becoming a little bit of a scruffy end.”

He continued, “‘His long term legacy is set, it’s protected, he’s one of the great all-time players, but in the short-term he’s got to do a lot better because is the Juventus manager wrong? Is the Manchester United wrong and now is the Portugal manager wrong? Ten Hag didn’t want him in the team because he thought he was better without him, does the Portugal coach feel the same?'”

This is almost certainly Ronaldo’s last World Cup, and he’d started 31 consecutive major tournament games for his country.

If this is how he goes out, it would be a disappointing finish to an awe-inspiring career.

As mentioned, his replacement was Ramos who scored on a masterful strike to put Portugal ahead in the first 18 minutes of the match.

Ronaldo clearly looked thrilled for his teammate.

Portugal added a second goal to take a 2-0 lead before Ramos added his second tally to make it 3-0.

Portugal added a fourth tally in the 55th minute before Ramos scored his third to make it 5-1.

Ronaldo entered the game in the 73rd and was given the captain’s armband.

Portugal rolled to a 6-1 victory and it looks like the decision to not start Ronaldo was the correct call.

In fact, Ronaldo likely won’t start another game in this Cup. What a wild turn of events.

Written by Ian Miller

Ian Miller is a former award watching high school actor, ice cream expert and long suffering Dodgers fan. He spends most of his time golfing, eating as much pizza as humanly possible, reading about World War I history, and trying to get the remote back from his dog. Follow him on Twitter.

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