DAILY MAIL 🔵 Phil Foden equals Cristiano Ronaldo’s Premier League landmark – Shango Media

DAILY MAIL 🔵 Phil Foden equals Cristiano Ronaldo’s Premier League landmark

  • Phil Foden equalled a landmark shared by Cristiano Ronaldo on Wednesday
  • He scored a hat-trick against Aston Villa in Man City’s 4-1 demolition job 
  • Have a day off, Pep! Guardiola’s lecture to Grealish on the Etihad pitch was unnecessary, says Ian Ladyman – It’s All Kicking Off 

Phil Foden now shares a Premier League landmark with Cristiano Ronaldo after his performance in Manchester City’s 4-1 win over Aston Villa. 

The 23-year-old scored a stunning hat-trick to help lift City level on 67 points with Liverpool, with both teams one point behind frontrunners Arsenal. 

Mail Sport’s Nathan Salt claimed Foden has to be the league’s Footballer of the Year for 2023/24 after he reached 21 goals for this campaign, by far his best total. 

Thanks to his mesmeric hat-trick, he has drawn level with Ronaldo, Frank Lampard, Didier Drogba, and others in a special club. 

He has now bagged three Premier League hat-tricks to sit alongside them in rarefied air. 

Phil Foden scored his third Premier League hat-trick in Manchester City's win over Aston Villa

Cristiano Ronaldo, Didier Drogba, and Frank Lampard are among the players to have scored three hat-tricks

It’s some way off Sergio Aguero’s standalone record of 12, and current City team-mate Erling Haaland already has five, but it shows the ilk he stands among. 

Only 41 players since the Premier League’s inception in 1992 have bagged three hat-tricks or more. 

If Foden reaches a fourth, he will draw level with the likes of Mohamed Salah, Son Heung-min, and Mail Sport columnist Chris Sutton. 

His first treble came in a 6-3 win over Manchester United at the Etihad in October 2022 – his first-ever goals against his club’s bitter rivals. 

And his second came back in February when City beat Brentford 3-1 at the Gtech Community Stadium. He is the first player to score two hat-tricks this season. 

‘I’m loving my football, playing with a smile on my face,’ he told TNT Sports after City thrashed Villa. 

‘I’m just trying to help the team because I know I’m capable of scoring goals. Today I showed that. I set myself [the target of] better than last season. Trying to get more goal contributions. I’m up this year. Doing well.

‘I see myself as a technical player in the pockets and out wide I can do that job. But I prefer in the middle. This year I’m growing into the game. 

Foden said after the game that he prefers playing through the middle - little surprise if he's scoring hat-tricks!

He scored three against Brentford from the wing back in February and is reaching the sort of numbers Kevin De Bruyne manages in contributions

City drew level on points with Liverpool and are one behind Arsenal in the Premier League

‘The manager spoke about showing rhythm and slowing the game down. I’ve added that to my game as well. Before I was going so quick; attacking every action. Now I’m getting the balance just right.

‘I always try and arrive in the box. That’s where the goals are at and you can get at least five a season arriving in the box late. I still have a lot to improve on and I’m still working on that position.’

Indeed, Foden’s impact from the middle has been remarkable and it outlines how much potential there is for England in the summer if Gareth Southgate can work out how to best deploy him. 

Alongside his 21 goals, Foden has 21 assists and is rivalling the sort of numbers that Kevin De Bruyne posts. 

De Bruyne managed 10 goals but a whopping 31 assists last season, and Foden is on course to make a similar number of total contributions. 

Rodri had opened the scoring after 11 minutes against Villa on Wednesday night before Jhon Duran restored parity.

But a blitz of beautiful goals from Foden – one in the first half and two in the second – left the victory beyond doubt.  

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