Ronaldo debut double thrashes Newcastle to shoot Man Utd the top
MANCHESTER, England, September 11 – Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice on his return to Manchester United, sending his club to the top of the Premier League with a 4-1 triumph over Newcastle United at Old Trafford on Saturday, despite all the hype, build-up, and expectation.
It was the perfect start to what seems like a new era for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team, with his compatriot Bruno Fernandes scoring an 80th minute screamer and replacement Jesse Lingard making a superb finish in the fourth.
“When you win a game, you feel good about yourself. You love it a lot when you see fans having a good time. Today, there were a lot of expectations. They all came through, “Solskjaer stated.
“Cristiano Ronaldo has grown into an incredible goal scorer. He dropped in, linked play nicely, and had a great game “Added he.
Long before kick-off, fans wearing shirts with Ronaldo’s name and number 7 sang the Portuguese 36-year-name old’s throughout Old Trafford, and they were not disappointed.
Ronaldo has set every major goal-scoring record in the game, with the only surprise being that he didn’t score his first goal of his second stay in England until nearly halftime.
With Mason Greenwood on his right and Jadon Sancho to his left, he was put in the middle of an attacking trio, with Fernandes hanging behind the front line.
On the stroke of halftime, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner, who returned to United from Juventus last month, scored from close range after Newcastle keeper Freddie Woodman mishandled a low drive from Greenwood.
It wasn’t amazing, but it was a perfect example of how Ronaldo has transformed himself from a fast winger to a goal-scoring striker during his first tenure at United.
However, it wasn’t all a ‘welcome home’ party for Newcastle, as Javier Manquillo equalized in the 56th minute with a low right-footed strike after Miguel Almiron had led a quick break for the visitors.
Newcastle had shown a clear flaw in Solskjaer’s attacking line-up, namely their vulnerability to the counterattack, and it remains to be seen whether superior teams will be able to exploit the lack of cover in front of United’s back four.
United’s momentum was in jeopardy, but the Portuguese proved his goal-scoring prowess once more in the 62nd minute, reclaiming the lead with a strike that harkens back to his early days under Alex Ferguson.
He displayed his strength and speed when he grabbed on to a through ball from Luke Shaw and, despite the presence of two defenders, shot through Woodman’s legs before reeling off to celebrate with his teammates in front of a jubilant Stretford End.
10 minutes from time, Fernandes ensured the three points by receiving a square ball from Paul Pogba and unleashing an incredible shot from 25 meters that swerved at speed into the top corner.
After further superb work from Pogba, substitute Lingard contributed to the celebration with a well-taken shot from inside the area as the Old Trafford supporters marched home to the refrain of ‘Viva Ronaldo.’
Newcastle manager Steve Bruce, a former Manchester United captain, was able to put aside his dissatisfaction with his team’s performance in enough to recognize Ronaldo’s impact on his return.
“If there is a true superstar among us, it is this boy and what he has accomplished. We’ve seen it before, and we’ve seen it again today. He’s a unique individual “he stated