Cristiano Ronaldo’s magnificent hat-trick secured a 3-2 win against Tottenham Hotspur in an enthralling Premier League match on Saturday, answering any worries about his continued worth to Manchester United.
The 37-year-old offered a reminder of why United decided to bring him back to Old Trafford only six days after questions were raised about his injured absence for the Manchester derby, and at the conclusion of a week highlighted by rumors regarding his relationship with interim manager Ralf Rangnick.
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner led the winner nine minutes from time before being whisked away to delighted applause. It was the 807th goal of his career, giving him the record for most goals scored in a single season in professional football. find out more
The mood at Old Trafford, which has had a dismal season, was back to the heady days of September, when the striker scored twice against Newcastle United on his return to the club, with the whole crowd screaming ‘Viva Ronaldo.’
United now sit two points ahead of Arsenal in fourth place, despite the fact that the Gunners have four games in hand, commencing with a home meeting against Leicester City on Sunday.
After receiving a beautiful pass from Fred, Ronaldo put United ahead in the 12th minute with a magnificent long-range strike from nearly 20 yards out.
Spurs drew level in the 35th minute thanks to a Harry Kane penalty after Dejan Kulusevski’s cross struck Alex Telles’ arm.
However, Ronaldo restored United’s lead three minutes later, sliding home after Jadon Sancho escaped the offside trap and set up Ronaldo with a low cross.
In the 72nd minute, Tottenham equalized thanks to an own goal by United captain Harry Maguire, who dived in to deflect a low cross from Sergio Reguilon past David De Gea.
After halftime, Ronaldo, who had twice challenged Hugo Lloris, clinched the game with a thunderous header from an Alex Telles corner.