Raúl González said "even for me this is really special" after his first European goals for FC Schalke 04 took him past Filippo Inzaghi as continental club football's all-time top scorer.
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Dedication, a long career and no small amount of skill are what you need if you want to be a record breaker. Raúl González's brace for FC Schalke 04 in Wednesday's 3-1 win against Hapoel Tel-Aviv FC eased him clear of AC Milan's Filippo Inzaghi as the outright top scorer in UEFA club competition.
Raúl's personal haul now reaches 70, with 68 of those strikes coming in the UEFA Champions League. The 33-year-old's move to Germany appears to have given the former Spanish international a new lease of life. Two expert finishes, one with either foot, sent the Arena AufSchalke into raptures as the Real Madrid CF great netted his first European goals for the Bundesliga side.
Raúl has been there, done that, and won it all, yet scoring in the UEFA Champions League has lost none of its lustre for the much-garlanded forward. He said: "I never imagined I would get so many goals in a competition like the Champions League, and even for me this is really special. I won the Champions League three times with Real Madrid, but today is a great day because I scored my first two Champions League goals for Schalke."
José Manuel Jurado created his compatriot's third-minute opener, and also contributed a delightful curled goal on 68 minutes to cap a magnificent individual display, yet his first thought was for his illustrious colleague. "I'm happy for my mate Raúl who scored historic goals," former Club Atlético de Madrid player Jurado told UEFA.com. "I think this is important, and people in Spain will be happy too. I have not checked my phone, but there will probably be some text messages to scroll through."
Such is the potency of the attacking triumvirate formed by the two Spaniards and Dutch international Klaas-Jan Huntelaar – who narrowly failed to score for the ninth game running for club and country – that Raúl was unable to hide the extent of the Bundesliga strugglers' European ambitions: "We have two weeks to prepare for the next match against [Hapoel] and have a good chance of getting into the next stage."
Jurado added: "Myself, Raul and Klaas-Jan are playing really well together. Huntelaar is scoring loads of goals in the Bundesliga and Raúl and me got on the scoresheet here. Our understanding is getting better and better."
Hapoel managed a late consolation through Etey Shechter but that was little comfort for goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama, who had notched the Israeli club's only previous UEFA Champions League goal this term – a penalty – in the 3-1 home defeat by Olympique Lyonnais.
The Nigerian international said: "I just wish I could have helped the team more. Today I was not that up to the task. We just hope we can take points from the game against Schalke in Israel. We are novices on the European scene and are on a steep learning curve."