The World Cup has officially begun. Sure, yes, there was a game yesterday, and two this morning. But the World Cup hasn't really begun until you see two of the soccer world's super powers go head to head in a deeply significant game. And nobody was going to bring that in the opening round quite like a Portugal vs. Spain matchup.
Spain was at the disadvantage of having their coach fired right before the tournament started. And Portugal was at the disadvantage of having very few attacking players worth their weight in salt—except for this one guy named Ronaldo. And good goddamn did he prove himself today.
Ronaldo opened his account early on a penalty that came to Portugal in the fourth minute:
Sure, sure, ho-hum. A gimme. And, to make things worse, he nabbed a brace with some sloppy bullshit as well:
Kinda reminiscent of the goal Clint Dempsey scored against Rob Green in 2010. Just a big old howler. So what? This Ronaldo guy keeps getting lucky. That's all. There's no way his old-ass is going to beat Spain out with their pair of glorious goals:
Oh. Oh, but wait. Oh, it turns out this Ronaldo guy is kind of good. Like, world-beatingly good. Just witness the sheer beauty of this free kick. It is a picture perfect curl over a very high jumping wall to seal the ball into the far corner, well beyond David de Gea's reach:
Sure, Ronaldo can't seem to hold water in La Liga, after third-place Real Madrid's 76 points got trounced to Barcelona's first-place 93 points. But then there's the Champions League. And then there's the Euros. He simply performs at the highest level of the game, always. It's unreal.
And just in case you thought the United States would have nothing to do with this World Cup, someone had to have a say:
Maybe the best part about this whole situation is that now Iran is the top of a group that contains Portugal and Spain—for now. God bless the World Cup.
This article originally appeared on VICE Sports US.