Manchester United manager Ralf Rangnick heaped praise on Cristiano Ronaldo following his impressive showing against Chelsea in the Premier League.
The Portugal international has been hugely instrumental for United up front in recent months. He bagged his 23rd goal of the campaign in the 1-1 draw against the Blues last night.
He has now netted eight of the Red Devils’ previous nine goals. The 37-year-old has also been impressed with his work rate during this period, winning important duels in his own half.
Ronaldo salvaged a point with a vital equaliser last night, but he was also effective defensively, winning six of his eight duels contested while making two clearances in the process.
He also managed two take-ons and was good with his link-up play from deeper lying positions. Following the game, Rangnick was full of praise for Ronaldo’s performance and attitude.
The German tactician added that it is not normal for anyone at his age to do that, and highlighted the importance of Ronaldo’s presence in the team going forward.
He told Manutd.com: “[It was] not only the goal that he scored today, also his whole performance, his attitude. How often he helped in our own half.”
“At the age of 37, a player like him, this is not normal to do that. He showed that today and if he plays like he did today he can still be a great help for this team.”
Speaking further about the Portuguese’s future, he added: “In the end, it’s both Erik’s and also Cris’s decision what they want to do. It is not for me to speak about that but, today, the performance of Cris was really great.”
When Rangnick first arrived as interim manager, there was much talk about Ronaldo’s place in the starting line-up and questions whether he can show a better work rate.
However, the Portuguese has proved critics wrong over the past few months. He was superb against Arsenal despite the defeat, bagging his 100th Premier League goal.
He had another lively performance against the Blues. He showed terrific control before his goal, but also helped out Alex Telles when Marcus Rashford seemed disinterested.
Ronaldo still has a huge part to play despite turning 37, but the big question remains whether he will stay with the club next season with Champions League football very unlikely.
He has not played out of Europe’s elite competition for the best part of two decades. He previously featured in the UEFA Cup with Sporting as a 17-year-old. Ronaldo’s future will be a talking point this summer.
Stats from Transfermarkt.com and SofaScore.com
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