Zlatan applauds Ronaldo hat-trick with snake around him

The hat-trick was Ronaldo's 94th of the season but the first to be done with a snake on him.

Zlatan applauds Ronaldo hat-trick

Zlatan Ibrahimović applauds Ronaldo? It didn’t seem a likely prospect going into last night’s World Cup qualifier between Sweden and Portugal, but that’s exactly what done gone happened.

The match, Englandless, was clinched by a Cristiano Ronaldo hat-trick made all the more remarkable by the fact that he spent the majority of the game with an adult python wrapped around him.

It is not known where the snake ventured from nor why it made a beeline straight for Ronaldo, but it was powerless to prevent the Real Madrid star firing his country to Brazil 2014.

The hat-trick was Ronaldo’s 94th of the season but the first to be done with a snake on him, with other memorable ones including a hat-trick against Galatasaray scored with his eyes blindfolded and a chain on his neck attached to a piano.

Ibrahimović had been dismissive of Ronaldo’s claims for ‘best in the world’ status, declaring himself to be the finest on account of his then-remarkable hat-trick in the Champions League against Anderlecht, when he spent the entire game guiding an old blind woman around by the hand while balancing a plate of meatballs on his nose.

He said: “What with the snake thing, I’ve got to hand it to Cristiano – that was even better than the one he scored when he got the EA Sports guy to shout ‘he’s on fire’ and then he actually burst into flames.

“But it’s still not as good as my perfect PERFECT hat-trick, when I scored with my head and both feet simultaneously for all three goals.

“I had to kind of crumple myself, it was nuts.”

Zlatan applauds Ronaldo hat-trick? It can happen.

Merry Christmas, everyone.

NOW: watch a video of Zlatan’s applause, and check out the best Ronaldo hat-trick v Sweden tweets