Analyzing Cristiano Ronaldo’s Next 5 Fixtures: Why CR7 Is Favorite to Win the IFFHS Worlds Top Goal Scorer Award Over Erling Haaland

Published 11/15/2023, 2:43 AM EST

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Cristiano Ronaldo is turning back the clock. He has rediscovered his goal-scoring form and a long-range stunner against Al-Duhail highlighted what was once thought to be lost. The Portuguese icon has scored 45 goals in the calendar year, more than double his tally in 2022. Ronaldo’s numbers make him the leading candidate for the IFFHS Top Goalscorer award. His closest competitor is Erling Haaland with 44 goals. However, there are plenty of reasons to believe that Ronaldo will take home the award over the Norwegian striker.

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The IFFHS goalscorer award is given to the player who scores the most goals in a calendar year. Interestingly, Cristiano Ronaldo is both the first recipient of the award and the player who has won this award the most (4 times). On this note, Ronaldo will look set to finish the year strongly after failing to get a Ballon d’Or nomination.

Why Cristiano Ronaldo will likely beat Haaland to the IFFHS Award

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Cristiano Ronaldo is currently on international duty with the Portugal squad. He will be involved against Iceland and Liechtenstein in the UEFA Euro qualifiers. Iceland and Liechtenstein stand 67 and 200 respectively in the FIFA rankings. At Al Nassr, his next 3 matches are against Al-Hilal, Persepolis, and Al Akhdoud respectively. Considering the strength of Portugal and Al Nassr, the only match likely to be challenging is the Al-Hilal one. Based on the opponent quality, it is inevitable that Ronaldo will add to his tally whereas the situation is completely different for Haaland.

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Haaland’s Norway will be facing Scotland and Faroe Islands, and the Scotland game is expected to be a stern test. Moving to club competitions, Haaland will have to face Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur in the next 3 games. Ange Postecogelu’s Tottenham and a resurgent Liverpool will pose plenty obstacles, with the likes of Van Dijk in defense for the Scousers. City’s Champions League tie against RB Leipzig is also expected to be a challenging encounter.

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Ronaldo producing these numbers at 38 is astonishing. There are some fans who have highlighted the quality of ‘Asian soccer’ as a reason. However, based on recent reports, Ronaldo might be returning to Europe to prove them wrong soon.

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Al Nassr set to participate in the UEFA Champions League as per reports

According to reports, Al Nassr is set to be invited to the 2024-25 Champions League. Until now, only UEFA-affiliated clubs have participated in the tournament. If Al Nassr do end up playing in it then it will be a first.

This news is set to a great opportunity for Cristiano Ronaldo. With 140 goals, the soccer icon is the leading goalscorer in the tournament’s history as well as making the most UEFA club appearances (197). Al Nassr’s participation means Ronaldo can add to his already impressive tally and cement himself as the best player in the tournament’s history.

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Do you believe Cristiano Ronaldo will win the IFFHS top goalscorer award? Let us know in the comments below.

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Written by:

Adithya Narayanan

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Adithya is a Soccer Writer at EssentiallySports. Being a Liverpool fan, times were tough right until 2015 when Jurgen Klopp turned him from a doubter to a believer. Life has been much easier ever since the Reds’ Premier League Triumph and it stands as one of his most pleasant memories in life.
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Edited by:

Jayant Chhabra

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