Manchester United have officially qualified for the knockout stage of the 2021/22 Champions League.
After a tumultuous few days which saw Ole Gunnar Solskjaer sacked as a result of the 4-1 hammering at Watford, the Red Devils were able to regroup and beat Villarreal 2-0.
And who grabbed the first for Michael Carrick’s new-look side? You guessed it, Cristiano Ronaldo.
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner was far from at his best inside the El Madrigal on Tuesday evening, but he delivered a goal late in the second half when United needed it most.
Ronaldo latched on to a loose ball just outside the area after some woeful defending from Villarreal and then elegantly beat Gerónimo Rulli with a wonderful lofted shot.
Villarreal 0-2 Man Utd Reaction | Football Terrace
It was a vintage finish from the Portuguese superstar, his sixth goal in five Champions League games this season.
Check out the strike here…
Video: Ronaldo’s crucial winner vs Villarreal
Ronaldo is just inevitable. That’s his 10th goal across all competitions in 2021/22, the 17th consecutive season he’s reached double figures at club level – yet more outrageous numbers from the 36-year-old.
He’s now also the first player from an English side to score in the first five matches of a Champions League campaign, which is another stellar achievement.
United then made sure of the three points just before the 90th minute and it was Jadon Sancho who netted the goal, his first for the team since joining from Borussia Dortmund.
It was a fine finish from the Englishman as well. Sancho’s powerful shot crashed off the underside of the crossbar and into the back of the net to finish off a well-constructed counterattack by United.
Video: Sancho scores first Man Utd goal vs Villarreal
Well played, Jadon.
Ronaldo’s clever pass in the build-up cannot be downplayed either, the former Real Madrid man proving once again that he’s far more than just a goalscorer.
So, Carrick’s at the wheel?