Watch: Cristiano Ronaldo sprints back into Man Utd half in 95th min
Much has been made of Cristiano Ronaldo’s lack of pressing and work rate this season, but he showed he was ready to put in a shift for new Manchester United manager Ralf Rangnick on Sunday at Old Trafford.
Ronaldo returned to Manchester United in the summer after 12 seasons away, banging in the goals and picking up trophies for Real Madrid and Juventus.
This season, his goal-scoring has continued in the same vein. In 17 games back in United red, he has 12 goals.
Yet many commentators, including former Liverpool man Jamie Carragher, have spoken of how his lack of work without the ball is hampering United tactically.
Whether you agree with that or not is a matter of personal judgement, but whatever the case, it is unlikely Ronaldo will get away with so little off-the-ball running under new boss Ralf Rangnick.
The German is renowned as the godfather of the high-intensity Gengepressing style, and it seems that focus on energetic pressing is already rubbing off on United’s Portuguese goal machine.
In their game against Crystal Palace at Old Trafford on Sunday, the first since Rangnick officially took the reins, Ronaldo was seen working hard right until the dying seconds.
With United defending a 1-0 lead in the 95th minute, Palace picked up the ball, spread it out to 19-year-old Michael Olise, who advanced up the pitch.
Ronaldo, 17 years Olise’s senior, made a lung-bursting sprint to put the Palace man under pressure, forcing a turnover of possession for his efforts.
This is Ronaldo tracking back on full sprint at 94th minute for his new gaffer, you don't get this easily just ask how Poch is doing with his megastars https://t.co/GhX9SZOfYK pic.twitter.com/s7DhMkiNwT
— juicer (@McBiryaani) December 6, 2021
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