Cristiano Ronaldo in focus as Manchester United striker surpasses 800 career goals

Cristiano Ronaldo often won titles like his brace in a 3-2 win for Manchester United end Arsenal Thursday saw him pass 800 career goals.

The five-time Ballon d’Or winner has been at the center of a lot of attention lately, with debate over his role on the team under incoming coach Ralf Rangnick.

NS Portuguese was named on the bench in United’s previous game against Chelsea but has been recalled as caretaker manager Michael Carrick oversaw his final game before handing it over to Rangnick.

Here, the PA news agency analyzes his performance.


Cristiano Ronaldo has been recalled to Manchester United starting XI (Martin Rickett/PA)

(PA wire)

This is the most heated area of ​​discussion, with Rangnick being known for his pressing tactics while Ronaldo has spent most of his illustrious career playing for teams that operate differently. United generally did a good job of pressuring Arsenal in their half, but Ronaldo wasn’t the clearest demonstration of that early on. He made some chases to gain control or cut off some opponents but didn’t always participate. However, it was worth noting that he put on more pressure after scoring the second goal, when perhaps adrenaline was flowing.


Ronaldo scored twice for Manchester United (Martin Rickett/PA)

(PA wire)

Naturally, Ronaldo spent most of the game in the center of attack and also made some moves down the left flank. Whenever United attacked, he lurked in or around the box menacingly. The ball doesn’t always come, but when it does he is a threat. There were also times when he dropped into midfield to receive the ball and launch attacks.


Ronaldo’s performance lifted in the second half (Martin Rickett/PA)

(PA wire)

Arsenal managed to keep Ronaldo at bay for most of the game and his runs on the ball in the quiet first half showed all to no avail. At one point, his understanding with Bruno Fernandes completely failed when he misread one-two from his teammate. Everything changed early in the second half with a quick run and cut to force a save before he was in position to score United’s second.


Ronaldo appeared to be out of action in the first half as he expertly shot at Aaron Ramsdale, catching the ball wide and also off target with an effortful overhead kick. These were setbacks for Arsenal and the Portuguese was much more ruthless after the break. He tested Ramsdale before scoring United’s second goal with a divine long-range shot to bring in his 800th goal for club and country. After that, he made no mistake from the penalty spot as he netted United for the third time in the net.

Overall impact

Ronaldo helps United come from behind (Martin Rickett/PA)

(PA wire)

From an underperforming performance in the first half, Ronaldo burst onto the scene as a world-class performer with two goals and an all-around performance in the second half. The debate over his exact role under Rangnick is likely to continue until it’s clear how the team will operate, but such displays suggest a place for him must be found. Cristiano Ronaldo in focus as Manchester United striker surpasses 800 career goals


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