Emotional night for Ronaldo

Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo admitted that facing his former side Manchester United in the Champions League had been an emotional experience.

Last Updated: 14/02/13 at 06:16 Post Comment

Cristiano Ronaldo scored a superb equaliser

Cristiano Ronaldo scored a superb equaliser

The brilliant Portuguese forward established himself as one of the finest players in the world during a six-year stint at Old Trafford before moving to Spain in 2009.

And, lining up against his old club in the first leg of a Champions League last-16 tie at the Bernabeu, Ronaldo got the equaliser in a 1-1 draw, rising majestically above Patrice Evra after half an hour to head home an Angel Di Maria cross.

But the 28-year-old did not celebrate wildly, showing respect for his former club by simply acknowledging the jubilant Real fans.

"I was in Manchester for six years, so tonight was very emotional for me," said Ronaldo. "I scored a goal but I didn't celebrate out of respect.

"Maybe United are favourites now, maybe not, anything can happen. Sometimes we are better away than at home, so we will see.

"It will be amazing to play at Old Trafford again after four years. It will be another emotional night."

In his post-match interview, Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson said of Ronaldo: "I spoke to him and he is sitting in our dressing room now, talking to the lads.

"He had six years with us and I am proud of how he flourished.

"I blamed Patrice Evra for not challenging for his goal until I saw the replay and felt a bit stupid.

"His (Ronaldo's) knee is about as high as Evra's head - phenomenal. I don't think any other player in the world can do that, certainly not (Barcelona's Lionel) Messi."

RONALDO'S NIGHT IN THE SPOTLIGHT

GOALS

Ronaldo scores goals and lots of them. His latest strike, a brilliant header after an impressively long time in the air, was his 183rd in 180 official matches since swapping red for white in the summer of 2009.

SHOOTING

Never shy of shooting, his first effort came eight minutes in and chances rained in after that, hitting a free-kick against the wall and volleying the rebound just wide. A second-half free-kick flashed narrowly over the bar and he was also denied by David De Gea, Jonny Evans and Rio Ferdinand.

POSITIONING

Ronaldo started the game playing on the left-hand side and generally stayed there, although he occasionally switched to the right, most notably in the first half when he came in to connect with Mesut Ozil's cross and score.

EXTRAS

A first-half shoulder flick into the path of Xabi Alonso caught the eye, as did a humbling of Rafael to lay on a move. But with Manchester United doing their best to keep him under lock and key, showboating was hard, even if he did try to score with a cute backheel.

CLASS

Ronaldo is so used to scoring goals that celebrating is not always on his mind, but it was particularly pertinent that he kept his reaction low key last night, putting an apologetic hand up.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

H

e made his power play to try and get Sheikhy to raise his wages or trade him to PSG. PSG were probably not interested and he is stuck with no cake and no vacation. @Jay_D> Surely you jest about FFP being real, right? All Platini is doing is making billionaries pay measly fines, so he and his cronies can get rich. If a fool can pay 50 mil for David Luiz, he will happily pay some fine to UEFA. FFP has failed as for it to succeed UEFA had to take it...

Synergy
Toure: I am staying with City

G

uess we can expect Toure's explanation of his behaviour around the same time Pete Townshend publishes his book then.

ceeps
Toure: I am staying with City

D

amn you Yaya, don't scare me like that! I only ate the icing. I didn't eat the soft and scrumptious middle - I will buy you another cake!

MCFC87
Toure: I am staying with City

Footer 365

Liverpool's Adam Lallana could miss start of Premier League with knee injury

Adam Lallana looks set to miss the start of the new Premier League season after suffering a knee injury in training.

Liverpool: Fara Williams welcomes Steven Gerrard contract news

Fara Williams reckons the contract set to be handed to Steven Gerrard will give Liverpool supporters a huge boost.

Transfer news: Sunderland sign Patrick van Aanholt from Chelsea

Sunderland have completed the signing of Holland left-back Patrick van Aanholt from Chelsea on a four-year deal.

Mail Box

Are Pre-Season Tours Really A Problem?

Are pre-season tours really a problem? Liverpool went to Australia last summer and it didn't prevent them from having a good season. Plus, thoughts on LvG and keepers...

It Isn't Easy Supporting Spurs, You Know

We have a long mail about the travails of supporting Spurs, plus Friday thoughts on Marko Marin, marketing, victory v beauty, travelling and vanishing sprays...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property