700 and Counting! 

Ronaldo reaches 700 club Goals, Messi close behind 



Cristiano Ronaldo scored his 700th career goal on Oct. 9. He has been playing professional soccer since 2002.

ERICK AGUILAR, Evergreen reporter

Cristiano Ronaldo, hallowed soccer legend, has reached 700 club goals.

On Sunday, Oct. 9 Manchester United beat Everton F.C. in a 2-1 victory, the winning goal being Ronaldo’s milestone score. 

I had the privilege of watching the game with my roommate. As a matter of fact, I saw Ronaldo’s 700th goal skid just past the keeper’s reach on live TV. 

The greatest thing is, when I sat down on the couch, dressed in an old hoodie and PJ pants, a bowl of leftovers in one hand and the TV remote in the other. I had no idea I would be witnessing history, I had no clue Ronaldo had 699 goals walking into that game. 

I do not consider myself a soccer fan – sorry dad. But I am a huge sports fan. I love the dynamics, power struggles, athlete headlines, comebacks, dynasties, underdogs, championship runs and heartbreaking final scores. I love it all, so to be a witness to soccer history and be able to discuss a player such as Ronaldo is a pleasure. 

It’s true, Ronaldo is not the player he used to be, but it would be irresponsible to not acknowledge his greatness. The Portuguese 37-year-old is the only player to reach the 700-goal  mark in Club history. 

In addition, Ronaldo has an additional 117 goals to his name with the Portuguese national team, making 817 career goals. 

Ronaldo had humble beginnings, having to work hard for what he has become and what he has achieved. 

Before playing for the top clubs across Europe, he played on the Portuguese teams of Clube Desportivo Nacional de Madeira and Sporting Clube de Portugal, where he was discovered and heavily sought after by many European powerhouse franchises. 

Oddly enough, the game that many would attribute to being Ronaldo’s “big break” would be a pre-season friendly match against Manchester United. Sir Alex Ferguson, well-respected manager of Manchester United at the time saw Ronaldo play only once, and it was against his own club at the friendly. So impressed with the young Ronaldo, Ferguson insisted on having him. 

Only days later Ronaldo was bought by Ferguson and headed north for England, soon to lace up his cleats for Manchester United, the club of his 2003 debut. 

After signing with Manchester United, he played six seasons with the team before being sold to the Spanish club, Real Madrid, in 2009. Nine years later, in 2018 he left the club for Juventus, an Italian club, where he played for four years. 

After his time on Juventus, just before the 2021 season, Ronaldo returned to the same club of his 2003 Premier League debut, Manchester United.

“It was already something very special seeing Ronaldo put the Man Utd jersey back on last season, so seeing him put his 700th career goal with that same jersey on was definitely a memorable moment,” said Bryce Lindsay a longtime Manchester United fan. 

Ronaldo has become one of the greatest strikers to ever touch foot on the pitch, earning tremendous accolades. Six Player of the Year awards, five Champions League titles, Five Golden Boot Awards, four UEFA Best Player Awards, five Ballon d’Or, two Spanish titles, two Italian titles, and three English league titles. 

Of course, the Ronaldo legacy could not be told without also mentioning perhaps the only player to rival his greatness, Lionel Messi. 

Messi has played professional club since 2004 and is only nine goals behind the 700-goal milestone, sitting at 691. During his time on the Argentinian national team, Messi has found the back of the net 780 times.

Messi, like his counterpart, has earned himself his own impressive awards including: 10 Player of the Year Awards, four Champions League titles, Five Golden Boot Awards, three UEFA Best Player Awards, seven Ballon d’Or, 10 Spanish titles, and one French title. 

It is no secret that soccer is not as revered here in the states as it is in Europe. To provide some perspective as to the level of stardom these two athletes hold, the Ronaldo and Messi debate has become the equivalent of the LeBron James and Michael Jordan debate here in the states. 

As both suitors are still playing, with Ronaldo and Messi entering their 19th and 17th seasons, respectively, the “G.O.A.T. (greatest of all time) debate” is alive and well in the soccer community. 

This is what sports is all about, a bunch of fans, such as myself, living their wildest dreams through the career of the professionals. It’s the want to have your name forever etched in history. The respect behind always being remembered, and in the sports world, there is perhaps no greater honor than to have your name associated with the game. 

It is no question that Ronaldo is such a player. A name that will be remembered for generations. We applaud him on his 700th goal and hope for many more.