Cristiano Ronaldo’s brutal actions after Man Utd goal in Atalanta Champions League clash

Cristiano Ronaldo’s first goal on Man Utd return in pictures

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Cristiano Ronaldo waved and blew a kiss at the Atalanta ultras after his late heroics for Manchester United on Tuesday night, it has been claimed. The Portugal international saved Ole Gunnar Solskjaer again with a fine double in their Champions League clash. And the result means his side remain on course to qualify for the knockout stages of the competition.

Manchester United were poor again.

But, because of Ronaldo, they were lucky again. The Portugal international seems determined to win this competition for a sixth time, having bagged five goals from four matches in the competition so far.

Solskjaer’s side fell behind in the 12th minute when  Josip Ilicic struck, with the striker’s low shot squirming under the body of David De Gea.

United then levelled just before the interval through Ronaldo, who converted after some neat work from Bruno Fernandes.

Atalanta then restored their advantage in the 56th minute, with Duvan Zapata getting the better of Harry Maguire before finishing from close range.

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But, just as it looked like United would slump to yet another disappointing defeat, Ronaldo volleyed home to secure a crucial point.

For the third European match on the trot, the 36-year-old stole the headlines with an act of fine individual brilliance.

And Vavel’s Brad Cox has claimed Ronaldo waved and blew a kiss at the Atalanta ultras following the game.

It appeared the veteran couldn’t help himself, especially having saved United on a night where, in truth, they deserved precious little.

The result means they stay top of their Champions League group with two matches remaining.

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And victories over Villarreal and Young Boys would see them through to the knockout stages, something they’ve not managed since the 2018/2019 campaign.

Ronaldo was a delighted figure after the match in Italy, though warned his team-mates they have to improve.

“It was a difficult game,” said the forward.

“I know that when we play Atalanta it’s difficult and we believe until the end that I will help my team get the three points and I’m so happy.

“We never give up and believe until the end. It’s a good result for us I think.

“The beginning was tough, Atalanta have a fantastic coach and they know what to do.

“I knew when I played in Juventus. We did our job well. We are lucky I scored but that’s football.”

“We still have to improve. We have different players and different systems.

“We have to adapt but it will take time. We have time to improve.”

Sky Sports pundit Paul Merson, meanwhile, thinks Ronaldo’s goal has papered over the cracks for United.

“It’s got to be one of the best finishes of all-time; it’s just out of absolutely nothing,” Merson said of his late leveller.

“He didn’t touch the ball in the second half. Not through his fault, he just didn’t get the service. But it comes to him and there’s no snatching at it, he hits through the ball perfectly.

“It’s absolutely phenomenal and his first goal was brilliant as well.

“I was one of the big critics. I was one who wasn’t sure about him coming back. But if you give him chances, he will score goals. Thirty-six or 46, it doesn’t make any difference, he will finish.

“If you took away his two goals tonight, he’s a two out of 10. But his two goals are phenomenal and I’m lost for words.”

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