Cristiano Ronaldo snatches dramatic late Champions League victory for Man United
FT: Man Utd 2-1 Villarreal
AGENCIES | SkySports – Cristiano Ronaldo snatched a dramatic late victory for Manchester United, beating Villarreal 2-1 on his record-breaking 178th Champions League appearance.
There were plenty of eyes on United heading into the fixture, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side losing three of their last four games, including the Group F opener against Young Boys two weeks ago. They also faced the side that beat them in the Europa League final four months ago.
Villarreal should have been out of sight in the first half, but came up against an inspired David de Gea and were also guilty of some poor finishing without their usual target-man in Gerard Moreno.
But the visitors soon found the breakthrough with the impressive Arnaut Danjuma setting up Paco Alcacer for a tap-in (53). The mood was starting to sag at Old Trafford, but Telles produced a moment of magic – firing home with a stunning first-touch volley – to make for an end-to-end finish.
Ronaldo made just 46 passes and did not have much to work with during the game, but on yet another milestone evening, he came up with the dramatic winning goal with the last kick, poking home from close range.
It gives United their first points of the Champions League campaign, sending them third behind Young Boys and early group F leaders, Atalanta. Villarreal remain bottom of the table with one point.
Man Utd: De Gea (8), Dalot (5), Lindelof (6), Varane (7), Telles (7), McTominay (6), Pogba (7), Fernandes (7), Sancho (6), Greenwood (7), Ronaldo (7).
Subs used: Cavani (7), Matic (6), Fred (n/a), Lingard (n/a).
Villarreal: Rulli (6), Albiol (6), Torres (6), Parejo (6), Capoue (7), Foyth (6), Alcacer (7), Trigueros (7), Danjuma (7), A Moreno (7), Pino (7).
Subs used: Dia (6), Estupinan (5), Pena (5), Mandi (5), Gomez (6).
Man of the match: David de Gea.