Cristiano Ronaldo scores 500th career goal, ties Real Madrid scoring record
Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo scored his 500th career goal for club and country -- in just 753 games -- and tied the club's scoring record with a brace in the 2-0 win against Malmo on Wednesday.
Ronaldo, 30, has scored 10 goals in his last six games for Real Madrid and is now level with club legend Raul's record at the top of the Madrid scoring charts as he had netted 323 in 741 games at the Bernabeu.
Ronaldo's goal total is different, however, according to the Real Madrid record books, which give the Portuguese an extra tally stemming from a game against Real Sociedad in which his long shot deflected off Real defender Pepe's back and into the net.
"I am very happy. Thank you to all of my teammates for helping me reach these figures and break the record at the greatest club in the world -- it's an honour," Ronaldo said after the game of his feat.
GOAL, RONALDO! He doubles Real Madrid's lead and matches Raul's club record of 323 goals! pic.twitter.com/VBXA6qm5BK- ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) September 30, 2015
Real Madrid boss Rafa Benitez hailed Ronaldo's milestone, and highlighted the speed at which his superstar reached Raul's Real goal total.
"He has surpassed Raul, who was a phenomenon, and that shows he has scored a lot of goals," said Benitez. "I hope he doesn't have a ceiling. I said it was unquestionable. The merit is that it took less time than the others and this gives more value to the achievement."
The Portuguese, who joined the club in 2009 for a then-world record fee of £80 million, has netted his 323 goals from just 308 matches. He also scored 118 goals for Manchester United, 55 for Portugal and five for Sporting.
"What Ronaldo does you cannot name, it is on another historic level," Raul told Marca earlier this week. "It is incredible what he has done in only six years, scoring an average of more than 50 goals a season, when it used to be hard for me to reach 20. I hope he keeps scoring many more goals for a long time, and helps the team to win titles."
Ronaldo's most prolific season was the 2011-12 campaign -- when he scored 69 goals for club and country -- and he has beaten the 60-goal mark in each of his last two seasons.
His current tally of 230 in 206 games puts him four away from third-placed Hugo Sanchez (234 in 347 games) in the all-time La Liga scoring list and also behind Telmo Zarra (251 in 277 games) and Barcelona striker Lionel Messi, who tops the charts with 289 in 321 games.
Ronaldo is also the record scorer in the Champions League; he has 82 (66 for Madrid, 15 for United).