RIO FERDINAND has joked that he is still Cristiano Ronaldo's "messiah" while congratulating his former Manchester United team-mate on reaching 100 international goals.
The Portuguese legend notched strikes No100 and 101 during his team's 2-0 victory over Sweden last night.
And ex-Red Devils co-star Ferdinand, 41, has delivered a touching message of congratulations to his old friend.
In a video released by the Fifa World Cup's Twitter page, he said: "Yes bro, it's Rio.
"Your teacher, your messiah, your idol… congratulations man – 100 goals for your national team, for Portugal.
"100 goals, a national icon… who looks up to me. It's amazing. 100 goals man just for your national team.
"I didn't get 100 goals in my whole career and you've got 100 goals just for your national team.
"Some players don't get 100 goals in their whole career man.
"This isn't even about your club goals this is just your national team, it's crazy.
"But listen, I always knew how hungry you were. How dedicated, and how much hard work you put into the game so you deserve it all man.
"Onto the next one. Onto the next target. Onto the next record. Take care my friend."
The coronavirus pandemic ensured that Ronaldo, 35, was stuck on 99 international strikes for ten months.
But he sealed his century on the stroke of half time last night – slamming home a free-kick.
And he swiftly made it 101, when he doubled his side's advantage from range on 72 minutes.
Ferdinand initially congratulated him at the time, writing: "This guy… 101 International Goals" followed by a string of laughing emojis.
The former England defender was a team-mate of Ronaldo throughout his Man United career between 2003 and 2009, watching the attacker develop from a tricky youngster into a superstar.
Only Iran's Ali Daei has more international goals, with a stunning 109 strikes in 149 games.
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