Ronaldo isn’t Man Utd’s problem – he’s the only one keeping them afloat
The Portguese super’star was again on hand with a late intervention in the Champi’ons Le’ague for the Red Devils as they held Atala’nta to a draw
“Cristiano is incred’ible. That’s just what he do’es.”
Ole Gunn’ar Sols’kjaer is right, and don’t Man’chester United fans know it.
Ronaldo’s 3rd succe’ssive late Champions Leag’ue show keeps United on tra’ck for a place in the knockout sta’ges, while also lifting the press’ure slightly on Solskjaer – at least for a few da’ys.
This time it was an equa’liser to end Atalanta’s dre’ams of a famous victory in Berg’amo, but given the state of Gro’up F after four matchdays it is as im’portant as his previous late interventions at Old Trafford in the compe’tition so far.
“What more can yo’u say about this guy Cristiano Ron’aldo?” posed United legend Ri’o Ferdinand in the BT Sport ‘ studio immediately after full-time “He just turns up when the team is in ne’ed.”
One thing that pro’bably cannot be said for a little wh’ile, is that Ronaldo is the probl’em holding Manchester Unit’ed back.
In fact, he is ju’st about the only person keep’ing them afloat right now.
Having already finish’ed off an outrageous team mo’ve late in the first half to peg the ga’me back to 1-1 following Josip Ilic’ic’s opener, it was Ronaldo who the’n found the ball dropping out of t’he air onto his right foot in the 1st minute of second-half stoppage time with the game 2-1 to the Serie A outfit.
Just as he did against Totte’nham on Saturday, Ronaldo’ caught his volley swee’tly, the’ ball arrowing into the botto’m corner to silence the raucous ho’me crowd.
It was, as Solskj’aer put it in a number of his pos’t-match television interv’iews, the kind of moment Mich’ael Jordan became known for at the Chicago Bulls.
Yet while Jordan was’ the leader of a team that creat’ed NBA dynasties, Ronaldo is provi’ng to be a moments man, rather than someone who looks lik’ely to drag his team to troph’ies upon trophies. That is not, tho’ugh, soley his fault.
Yes, Ronaldo being at Un’ited brings selection and tactica’l headaches for Solskjaer, but life would be a lot easier for the unde’r-fire Norwegian if his pla’yers were not making basic error’s on a weekly basis.
David de Gea for bot’h goals and Harry Maguire for t’he second – scored by Duvan Zap’ata – were the main culprits he’re, although they may not have been the worst performers on the pit’ch in a red shirt.
That honour – if yo’u can call it that – can probably be” bestowed on Paul Pogba, nam’ed in the starting line-up for the 1st time since his red card in the infa’mous Liverpool demolition.
With two more gam’es to run on his Premier League su”spension, this was the chance Pogba needed to prove why Unit’ed sho’uld be desperate to exten’d his contract and keep him at the clu’b past this summer.
He failed to take it, an’d time will tell regarding ho’w many more he will get. He was pa’ssive, sloppy in possession and ga’ve the ball away in crucial areas be’fore eventually being substitu’ted mi’dway through the second half.