Only 52 hat-tricks have been scored in over 800 matches in the 21 editions of the World Cup tournament. The first hat-trick was scored by Bert Patenaude of the United States, playing against Paraguay in 1930; the most recent was by England's Harry Kane against Panama on 24 June 2018.
The only World Cup not to have at least one hat-trick scored was the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany. The record number of hat-tricks in a single World Cup tournament is eight, during the 1954 FIFA World Cup in Switzerland.
Here are Top 5 of the greatest FIFA World Cup hat-tricks of all time:
1. Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal vs. Spain, 2018)
CThe 2018 World Cup started with a bang, thanks to Rinaldo.In the Iberian derby, the Juventus star took centre stage, with his inch-perfect free-kick past David de Gea in the dying stages of the game an iconic footballing moment.His first came from the penalty spot, before an error by De Gea gifted him his second.
2. Pelé (Brazil vs. France, 1958)
One of the greatest footballers of all time , Pelé, represented the Brazilian squad in the 1958 FIFA World Cup semi-final against France. 27,100 spectators witnessed his skill at the Råsunda Stadium in Solna, Sweden, on 24th June 1958. He scored three spectacular goals in the 52nd, 64th, and 75th minute of the game against France that day.
3. Gonzalo Higuain (Argentina vs. South Korea, 2010)
In the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, Gonzalo Higuaín joined Guillermo Stábile and Gabriel Batistuta (no. 6 on our list) as the third Argentinian to score a hat-trick in a World Cup.
This is a poacher’s hat-tick, with Higuain being in the right place at the right time, every time. When you do that three times in a World Cup, there’s a lot more than just luck at play.
The first goal, and Higuaín’s first World Cup finals goal, came as the result of a floating cross from Maxi Rodríguez outside the box and into the penalty area. The ball was headed on once more by Nicolás Burdisso, and there was Higuaín waiting at the far post. Higuaín’s second goal arrived as the result of a sensational run by Messi from the halfway line.
A quick, one-two pass between Messi and Sergio Agüero at the top of the box, led to a shot from Messi bouncing off the post and Higuaín was there, once again, to make sure with a simple tap-in. Higuaín’s third and final goal came from subsequent chips between Messi and Agüero in the box, with Higuaín ready and waiting at the far post for an easy header.
4. Paolo Rossi (Italy vs. Brazil, 1982)
The amount of pressure of Paolo Rossi's shoulders during the 1982 FIFA World Cup was unimaginable. For two years leading up to the World Cup, Rossi was banned from playing professionally for his (alleged) involvement in the infamous Totonero match-fixing scandal.
And everyone expected him to fail. But Rossi was determined to prove them wrong, and he did!Rossi was the tournament’s top goal-scorer with six total goals. His World Cup hat-trick came in an epic 3-2 victory against Brazil.
His first goal was a header off a beautiful cross from Antonio Cabrini with just five minutes in. For his second, he picked off a pass in the Brazilian backfield and slotted in a goal from the top of the box. And for his hat-trick goal, he finished off a shot by Marco Tardelli in the 74th minute. Rossi also bagged the opening goal in Italy’s 3-1 victory over West Germany in the final.
5. Gerd Müller (West Germany vs. Bulgaria, and Peru, 1970)
Nikodimov put Bulgaria into the lead after 12 minutes from a free kick, but West Germany soon fought back and were 2-1 ahead at half-time, thanks to Libuda (20 mins) and Müller (27). In the second half the Germans extended their lead with goals from Müller (52, pen) and Seeler (67).
Müller completed his hat-trick with a goal in the 88th minute, followed immediately by Bulgaria's second goal, scored by Todor Kolev, whose brother Ivan played in the 1962 and 1966 World