Goncalo Ramos: Who is Portugal’s World Cup hat-trick hero?
Portugal’s Goncalo Ramos became known to the world football public on Tuesday evening with a remarkable World Cup performance against Switzerland.
The striker, who was more or less unknown before, was given the big task of taking the place of one Cristiano Ronaldo, who was left on the bench.
In a World Cup match, in the round of 16, Ramos could have suffered under a lot of pressure, but instead, he shone and gave the performance of his life.
Having played a total of 33 minutes for Portugal before the Swiss clash, his introduction was a baptism of fire but, in the right circumstances, fire makes perfect.
Who is Goncalo Ramos?
Born in 2001, Ramos started his football journey in the Benfica chain, joining the club at the age of 12.
Ramos started to stand out in Portugal’s youth teams as he won the top scorer award at the European U19 Championship in 2019. His hat-trick in the semi-final against the Republic of Ireland was a particularly important performance.
Debut with Benfica
He made his first-team debut in the 2021/22 season but initially struggled for minutes as he competed with Darwin Nunez.
However, as a versatile player who can ply his trade across the width of the front line, Ramos began to force his way into the team on a more regular basis.
Why is it called ‘O Feiticeiro’?
Meaning “Magician”, Ramos was aptly named thanks to his versatile style of play.
Goal against Liverpool
Ramos became Benfica’s second-youngest goalscorer in the knockout stages of the Champions League when he scored against Liverpool at Anfield. Unfortunately for Benfica, this was not enough to prevent them crashing out of the tournament in a 6-4 aggregate defeat.
Good progress in the 2022/23 season for Benfica
However, he has been in much more productive form this season, scoring a valuable hat-trick in the Champions League qualifying rounds before contributing another goal to send the Portuguese side through to the last 16.
As a result, Ramos has scored 14 goals and provided six assists in 21 games this season – including seven goals in his last six league appearances.
The youngest player to score a hat-trick in the knockout stage of the World Cup after Pele
Finishing second to Pele in any competition is no small feat. Roma’s hat-trick against Switzerland saw him climb the podium for the youngest ever treble knockout scorers.
The first player to score a hat-trick in his first game as a starter at the World Cup since Miroslav Klose
Ramos also saw his name flashed alongside one of the World Cup’s all-time leading scorers as he became the first man to bag a hat-trick in his first World Cup start since German assassin Miroslav Klose did it in 2022.
More goals in the knockout stages of the World Cup than CR7
It took Ramos just 17 minutes to unlock the knockout stage of the World Cup – something Ronaldo has yet to achieve despite this being his fifth World Cup appearance.