cristiano ronaldo did it again to atalanta. For the second game in a row, the Italian side were in the lead against Manchester United, only to see the Portuguese superstar deny them victory. Ronaldo equalized twice and the final blow came in second-half stoppage time. The 2-2 draw salvaged a point for Man United and kept them top of the Group F standings with two games to play.
atalanta led 2-0 at old trafford two weeks ago and the red devils came back for an incredible 3-2 victory in their last head-to-head clash. This time in Italy, Atalanta went up 1-0 and 2-1, but Ronaldo found a way to respond each time.
Ronaldo’s first goal to make it 1-1 came just before halftime in a lightning-fast combination with teammate Bruno Fernandes that Atalanta never saw coming. And then, in second-half stoppage time, Ronaldo fired an accurate first shot from outside the box to stun the crowd at Stadio di Bergamo as the ball sailed inside the left post.
The Red Devils’ resurgence continues after a humiliating 5-0 Premier League home loss to Liverpool that nearly cost manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer his job. The Norwegian manager was allowed to continue and immediately changed Man United’s formation to a 3-5-2 that worked almost perfectly in a 3-0 win over Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League. solskjaer started the match in italy with the same 3-5-2 tactical scheme, but an injury to the team’s best defender, raphael varane, forced manchester united to abandon the 3-5-2 and resort to 4-2-3- 1 in the first half.
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atalanta striker duvan zapata was one of the best players on the pitch but was unable to add to his goal and assist despite being a constant thorn in united’s side. At the other end of the pitch, Man United rarely threatened Atalanta’s back line. the visitors needed two moments of genius from their star striker, who pulled them out of the jaws of defeat once again.
“[ronaldo] is one of the best to ever play this game. i’m sure it’s the same feeling the chicago bulls had with michael jordan…if you want the ball to drop on someone at the last minute, @cristiano is the one.” ole gunnar solskjaer reflects on today’s match. pic.twitter.com/r40byzwnw5
final result of atalanta vs. manchester united
see: atalanta vs. manchester united on fubotv
goals: ata — josip ilicic (duvan zapata) — 12 min. manu — christian ronaldo (bruno fernandes) — 46+ min. ata — duvan zapata (jose palomino) — 58 min. manu — christian ronaldo (mason greenwood) — 91°+ min.
(all eastern times)
final: atalanta 2, manchester united 2
min. 91: The only way Manchester United was going to score was through Cristiano Ronaldo and he finds the net on a fantastic shot from outside the area. incredible strike through traffic. Low and precise shot inside the left post.
cristiano ronaldo does it again 😳 pic.twitter.com/almk5dk2av
minute 87: substitutions: van de beek is in the place of bruno fernandes for man united and he doesn’t like it. Jadon Sancho also enters the match.
min. 85: Zapata is more dangerous than the entire Man United attack. he shoots on goal again and david de gea has to make the big save.
min. 79: duvan zapata’s header over the crossbar after a cross from the right. looks like you can score another. atalanta’s forwards have posed a great challenge for manchester united’s defenders.
min. 71: sub – atalanta counterattacks by bringing in another striker, luis muriel (substitute for ilicic), to team up with fellow Colombian duvan zapata.
68 min: subs: man united making some changes to add spark to the attack. nemanja matic (by pogba) and edinson cavani (by rashford). the red devils need to accelerate on offense, because atalanta is comfortable on defense.
min. 58: the goal stands! Zapata beats central defender Bailly and then Harry Maguire before scoring. atalanta takes the lead for the second time.
united they go down again 😬 pic.twitter.com/kef5lbpvkc
min. 56: duvan zapata scores for atalanta, but the flag is raised. Zapata timed his run behind him very well. if he was offside, he was by a very tight margin. var is checking it.
min. 51: yellow for scott mctominay for deflected arm on joakim maehle of atalanta.
min. 49: man united’s greenwood hits the right post! but it’s out of the game. I wouldn’t have counted if I had entered.
min. 46: The second half begins and Atalanta is immediately on the front foot.
halftime: atalanta 1, manchester united 1
half time: atalanta had a strong dominance in this match in the first half. between the draws from manchester united and the good play of centre-backs, midfielders (teun koopmeiners) and forwards duvan zapata and josip ilicic from atalanta, the home team dominated the game and was able to find at least one more goal. Not only did Man United fall behind, they had to change their formation after losing their best defender, Raphael Varane, to injury. But Bruno Fernandes and Cristiano Ronaldo rescued the Red Devils with a world-class play that Ronaldo finished off. man united is still alive.
min. 46: United man goal! it’s ronaldo! what a quick and penetrating passing move between bruno fernandes and christian ronaldo and it’s cr7 with the easy shot. atalanta didn’t even see it. that’s how fast it happened. ronaldo to the rescue again.
who else but a Christian. ronaldo 😤 pic.twitter.com/u084roytq1