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How Cristiano Ronaldo performed on second Man Utd debut against Newcastle
12/09/2021 11:36:50

Cristiano Ronaldo rose to the occasion to help Manchester United to victory against Newcastle in their Premier League clash on Saturday, with the Red Devils winning 4-1. The Portugal international recently re-signed for the club from Juventus. And he’s now up and running in English football once again.

Ronaldo had originally looked set to join Manchester City late in the summer transfer window.

However, the 36-year-old ended up returning to Manchester United instead after the likes of Sir Alex Ferguson, Rio Ferdinand and Patrice Evra all got involved.

United then confirmed the return of Ronaldo on deadline day, 12 years after he departed for Real Madrid.

And, against Saturday, he was given his debut against Newcastle.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had previously been coy on the possibility of the forward starting the match, merely saying he’d be ‘involved’.

But United decided to deploy him in the No 9 role, with Jadon Sancho and Mason Greenwood then fielded out wide.

Ronaldo walked out to a raucous reception at Old Trafford, with supporters heard bellowing ‘Viva Ronaldo’ with enthusiasm.

He was seen clearly enjoying himself, beaming in the presence of his new team-mates.

And it was inevitable that Ronaldo would open the scoring at the Theatre of Dreams, striking just before the interval.

Mason Greenwood’s powerful strike was too much for Newcastle goalkeeper Freddie Woodman to cope with.

And Ronaldo was on hand to tap the ball home, producing his iconic ‘SIUUU’ celebration in the aftermath.

The goal came after United had started sluggishly.

Bruno Fernandes and Jadon Sancho looked bright but, otherwise, the rest of Ronaldo’s team-mates struggled to get into the match.

After half time, it was a similar story.

United were pegged back by Newcastle, with former Liverpool star Javier Manquillo striking for Steve Bruce’s side.

But, just as they were starting to get back into the game, Ronaldo then struck for a second time.

Played through by Luke Shaw, the 36-year-old kept his cool to beat Freddie Woodman for a second time.

That got Old Trafford roaring, especially when he again produced his ‘SIUUU’ celebration after finding the net.

And, in the end, Ronaldo’s debut didn’t disappoint in the slightest. Even if Bruno Fernandes risked stealing his thunder with a fine strike as the clock wound down, while Jesse Lingard also notched.

Before the game, he insisted he wasn’t here to take it easy, saying: "This is why I am here. I am not here for a vacation.

“As I told you, before was good, winning important things and I wore the shirt before many years ago, but I am here to win again.

"I am capable, me and my team-mates. I am ready to go, I am ready to go. It is a good chance for me, for the supporters, for the club, to get one step ahead.

"I am ready and I think I will be a huge thing in the next three or four years."

And everybody should take note.

Ronaldo has started as he means to go on. A perfect debut, even if the Red Devils weren’t flawless on the day.

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