Cristiano Ronaldo enjoyed an eventful night during Real Madrid's routine Champions League Group A victory away to Malmo on 30 September, with his first goal at the Swedbank Stadion representing the 500th of his illustrious club career to date. If that was not quite enough, the two-time Ballon d'Or winner's second effort in stoppage time ensured that he has now matched Bernabeu icon Raul's record of 323 goals for the La Liga giants.
What renders the latter feat so remarkable is the fact that he equalled that tally having played a quite staggering 419 fewer games than the Spanish striker in all competitions for Real and has also spent a decade less in their first team since moving from Manchester United in a then world-record £80m (€108.5m, $120.9m) transfer back in June 2009.
In fact 118 of Ronaldo's career goals came during that six-year stint at Old Trafford, with five scored during his formative years at Sporting Clube de Portugal. He has also now set a new Champions scoring record for Real with 67 and has scored 82 in the competition overall. At international level, the Portuguese captain has struck 55 times in 122 caps since making his debut against Kazakhstan 12 years ago.
"That the team won was the most important thing," the 30-year-old, who needed 753 matches in total to break the 500 barrier, told UEFA.com after his memorable night in Sweden. "But I have to say that I'm happy to break the records. To become the highest scorer for Real Madrid, the biggest club in history. I'm so proud and happy. It's a great moment.
"It's fantastic, I will sleep happy tonight. But on Sunday we have another game, a derby against a fantastic team. I'm happy today. This was great for Real Madrid, great for me. But I'm thinking of the next game which is the most important."
Ronaldo currently sits joint-top with teammate Karim Benzema at the top of the La Liga scoring charts, with all five of his goals so far this term coming in the 6-0 demolition of Espanyol last month. He will look to improve on that record this weekend as Rafael Benitez's side, who sit third at present after amassing 14 points from their opening six games and conceding just once, make the short trip to the Vicente Calderon for a keenly anticipated derby clash with rivals Atletico.