Premier League: Cristiano Ronaldo rolls back the years with dream double on Manchester United return | Football News
Ronaldo now has 120 goals with United to his name, but he scored the first since he left for Real Madrid 12 years ago to lead Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men to the top of the rankings. Premier league desk.
📸 12 years and 124 days since we last saw Cristiano Ronaldo score in the #PL, this happens … # MUNNEW https://t.co/ceuvUgBgpR
– Premier League (@premierleague) 1631372163000
United had to work harder than expected for the three points, but were able to rely on Ronaldo’s predatory instincts to strike twice on either side of Javier Manquillo’s well-worked draw.
Bruno fernandes he then sealed a day when the Portuguese stars shone with an impressive long-distance effort with 10 minutes remaining before Jesse Lingard completed the score in injury time.
A couple of magnificent Portuguese 😍🇵🇹 @ B_Fernandes8 x @Cristiano #MUFC | #MUNNEW https://t.co/q38sXkdeq9
– Manchester United (@ManUtd) 1631375260000
United’s luck on the pitch has drastically declined since Ronaldo’s unsuccessful departure in the Premier League or Champions League since Alex Ferguson retired as manager in 2013.
That was for you, Reds ❤️ # MUFC | #HereWeBelong https://t.co/7pZE8kKWY5
– Manchester United (@ManUtd) 1631376603000
His return was enough to create a feverish atmosphere among the 74,000 attendees who had not seen each other at Old Trafford for many years.
The 36-year-old was serenaded with songs in his honor long before the match kicked off and even received celebrations from the goals he scored in a warm-up shooting exercise.
The arrival of Ronaldo has added even more firepower to an already laden selection of attacking options on offer to Solskjaer.
That. One moment. https://t.co/XObaGzcNUO
– Manchester United (@ManUtd) 1631372233000
Jadon Sancho and Mason Greenwood flanked Ronaldo on a front of three with Fernandes and Paul Pogba supplying ammunition from midfield.
The crowd that had come for a party was starting to get restless as Newcastle held on in relative comfort until Ronaldo’s first big moment came in first-half stoppage time.
Greenwood had scored in United’s first three Premier League games before the international break and provided the spark once again when Freddie Woodman spilled his deflected effort and the ball fell perfectly for Ronaldo to crash at home.
Rather than opening the floodgates for a comfortable victory, Newcastle emerged for the second half with a much more potent threat and opened United to stun home support within 10 minutes of the second half.
Miguel Almirón, who was only allowed to play on Friday after the Paraguayan soccer federation withdrew a case for sanction for not being released for international service, stormed into midfield and released Allan Saint-Maximin.
The Frenchman then rolled the ball perfectly into Manquillo’s path to score his first goal against Newcastle in 85 appearances.
United, on the other hand, now have one of the deadliest finalists in game history and Ronaldo made sure the day was all about him in 62 minutes.
Despite his years of breakthrough, Ronaldo showed no shortage of pace to pull away from Isaac Hayden to hold onto Luke Shaw’s pass and his powerful punch tore through Woodman’s grip.
United still needed David de Gea’s intervention to secure victory as the Spaniard turned brilliantly behind Joelinton’s shot that was destined for the top corner.
Fernandes has been United’s talisman for most of the 20 months since arriving from Sporting Lisbon, just as Ronaldo did in 2003.
And the midfielder made sure his compatriot didn’t completely overshadow him with a sensational punch to the top corner of Paul Pogba’s pass.
Pogba was also involved in the fourth as Lingard turned to his pass and huddled in the far corner.