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Cristiano Ronaldo’s ten best goals that stunned the world after Juventus star’s astonishing header against Sampdoria

CRISTIANO RONALDO again stunned the world last night when he showed off his astonishing athleticism - leaping into the Genoese air to nod home Alex Sandro's cross against Sampdoria.

The 34-year-old's physical powers are showing no signs of waning, as he continues to add to his considerable archive of extraordinary goals.

This particular special saw him crane his neck muscles while metres in the air to crash home the winner in Juve's 2-1 Serie A triumph over Samp.

And part of Ronaldo's lustre is how so many of his special goals have graced the most important moments.

In the Champions League, World Cup, title races - it's been virtually a given for the last 15 years that Ronaldo will leave his mark.

Here, SunSport runs down what we think are his top ten greatest goals.

10) Rayo Vallecano backheel

In February 2012, Ronaldo's Real Madrid were locked in a fierce battle with rivals Barcelona to win back a title that they hadn't won since 2008.

Jose Mourinho's side scored an astonishing 121 goals in La Liga alone that year - but minnows Rayo Vallecano were holding firm against their neighbours.

But early in the second half, after Rayo failed to clear a corner, Ronaldo, with his back to goal, showed the audacity to backheel through the crowded penalty area - perfectly finding the bottom corner.

Madrid went on to reclaim their title that year, with Pep Guardiola even electing to take a sabbatical after having his crown ripped from him.

9) Free kick vs Atletico

A couple of months after that victory over Rayo, Madrid found themselves travelling to their other, more illustrious, neighbours Atletico.

At the time, Diego Simeone's side hadn't beaten Real Madrid in this century - but were attempting to stop the men from the Bernabeu lifting the La Liga title.

But Ronaldo was having none of it.

The Portuguese scored a stunning hat-trick as his side romped to a 4-1 victory that kept them four points clear of Barcelona at the top.

And it was the first, Ronaldo's 39th of the season, that most caught the eye.

In his trademark stance over a free-kick, around 30 yards out and a little to the left - Ronaldo proceeded to swerve the ball into the far corner - the ball leaving his foot like a bullet and rocketing into the net, with Atleti 'keeper Thibaut Courtois left completely stranded.

8) Levante screamer

Yet another from that astonishing 2011-12 campaign, Ronaldo bullied Levante with a ruthless hat trick.

And the best of which came when he cut in from the left hand side and hammered a shot at goal.

The beauty of it was that it flew so high... before dipping violently goalwards.

The ball's pace and trajectory left goalkeeper Gustavo Munua with absolutely no chance, and was completely characteristic of the incredible season Ronaldo had to drag his side to that elusive La Liga title.

7) Spain free kick

In what was arguably the match of the 2018 World Cup, Ronaldo once again illustrated his extraordinary ability to drag his team kicking and screaming to the result they need.

Having already scored twice, but trailing 3-2 to Spain in the dying stages, Ronaldo found himself standing over a free-kick.

Around 22 yards out, and slightly to the right, the national team legend abandoned his usual knuckleball technique and instead curled an unstoppable strike around the wall and into David de Gea's net

6) Swervy left foot vs Pompey

This strike was all the way back in 2006, and the first of two unbelievable goals against poor old Portsmouth in this list.

Ronaldo's first league title triumph at United was still over a year away at this point, and he was very much still in the transition phase between flashy youngster and all-out goal machine.

But in this match at Fratton Park, he showcased a taste of what was to come by scoring an incredible goal as United blitzed their opponents in the first half.

He dribbled onto his left foot, miles out from goal, and smacked an unstoppable drive past Dean Kiely.

The swerve and power generated by the shot with his weaker foot left Kiely completely helpless, despite the ball being nowhere near the corner.

5) Header vs Man United

Next we delve into the 2012-13 season, as Ronaldo inevitably came back to haunt his former club in his mentor Sir Alex Ferguson's final season.

United had lead at the Bernabeu after Danny Welbeck nodded in a corner.

But Ronaldo had his say, and in incredible fashion.

Angel Di Maria whipped a cross in from the left hand side.

And Patrice Evra was left with absolutely no chance as his friend and former team-mate Ronaldo leapt high into the night sky to beat David de Gea.

What makes it so impressive is not only how high he jumps, but how he manages to direct his header so perfectly once up there.

A true Ronaldo classic.

4) Porto long ranger

This was a crucial goal on the road to the Champions League final in 2009.

Ronaldo, in what was quite apparently going to be his last season at Old Trafford, had truly arrived as a proper all-time great.

And with United's progression to the semi-finals looking precarious after a 2-2 first leg draw in Manchester, Ronaldo left his mark as he so often does.

Just six minutes into the second leg at the Estadio Dragao, Ronaldo took aim from an astonishing distance.

From fully 40 yards, he rocketed an unstoppable shot into Helton's top corner.

It looked an impossible distance as it became apparent that he was taking aim.

But the ball appeared to get even faster as it flew into the back of the net.

3) Arsenal counter attack

In the Champions League semi-finals of that same 2008-09 season, Ronaldo again put his stamp all over the tie.

With Sir Alex Ferguson's side having brought a 1-0 aggregate lead to the Emirates from the first leg - United's chances of progression to a second successive final looked promising.

And they absolutely blitzed the Gunners in North London.

Ronaldo actually scored two goals worthy of this list that night.

His first was an unbelievable free-kick spanked in from wide on the right side of the pitch.

But the best came when he finished off an incredible counter-attack.

After an Arsenal cross was half cleared, Ronaldo laid the ball off to Park Ji-sung before embarking on a lung-busting 90 yard sprint.

He was given the ball back by Wayne Rooney at the end of his gallop forward and was clinical - ending Arsenal's final hopes for good.

2) Portsmouth free kick

Probably Ronaldo's most famous goal for United.

The "knuckleball" technique was an alien concept to English football fans back in 2008.

But against Portsmouth at Old Trafford that year, Ronaldo gave us an incredible introduction.

Breathing heavily, eyes glazed over with focus, he belted the ball into the top corner with the most incredible swerve and dip that fans had ever seen.

Portsmouth 'keeper David James shrugged his shoulders in disbelief at the shot that had just beaten him.

While Paul Scholes and Wayne Rooney ran over to celebrate with Ronaldo, stunned smiles across their shocked faces.

Ronaldo was showing English football an astonishing blend of pace, skill and athleticism that it had never seen before.

And that night at Old Trafford, he delivered one of its first tastes of the knuckleball.

1) Overhead kick vs Juventus

At number one then, is Ronaldo's unbelievable overhead kick for Real Madrid against Juventus in 2018.

It wasn't even a good cross, and it had no right to be scored from.

As the ball flies across the air it looks for all the world that it destined to be challenged for by Lucas Vasquez.

But then from nowhere, Ronaldo appears and does THAT.

He produces one of the most spectacular overhead kicks that the world has ever seen.

The Juventus supporters were so amazed that many gave him a standing ovation, in appreciation of the unbelievable, historic goal that had just been scored against their team.

Ronaldo has an incredible knack of scoring huge goals in the latter stages of the Champions League, and this one set the tone as Madrid went on to bag their third triumph in a row.

And just a few months later, those appreciative Juve fans saw Ronaldo leave Spain to join them.

Ronaldo scores with incredible header jump
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