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Cristiano Ronaldo: Real Madrid Star Comes Back to Haunt Manchester United

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MARCH 05:  Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid salutes the crowd at the end of the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 Second leg match between Manchester United and Real Madrid at Old Trafford on March 5, 2013 in Manchester, United Kingdom.  (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
Alex Livesey/Getty Images
Ryan RudnanskySenior Writer IMarch 5, 2013

Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo has scored two goals in two games against Manchester United since leaving the club in June 2009.

Talk about your all-time backfires.

Ronaldo, who credits Sir Alex Ferguson for helping him develop as a footballer, scored the match-winner in the 69th minute against United on Tuesday at Old Trafford. That was after he scored the equalizer in a 1-1 tie with United on Feb. 13 in Champions League play.

On Tuesday, Ronaldo burst to the left side of the net to slide home Gonzalo Higuain's cross with ease. It came just three minutes after Luka Modric's equalizer and stunned the crowd at Old Trafford.

But Ronaldo didn't celebrate. In fact, he refused to. He respected his time at Old Trafford with Ferguson too much. For such an explosive moment, he preferred to quietly walk away. It was as if an apparition of Cristiano Ronaldo had come back to haunt the United faithful. He didn't even want to be seen.

It was bound to happen, of course. With some games against his former club on the slate this season, it was only a matter of time before the superstar would swing one home in dramatic fashion. 

Everything was set up nicely for it to happen, too. The controversial red card given to Nani in the second half breathed more life into Real. Up until that point, Ronaldo had relatively been kept in check. 

But it was as if it was destined. You don't lose a superstar and expect to never hear from him again. A sonic boom reverberates for a long time. Ferguson could only watch in anguish—and possibly in admiration—as he got a front-row seat to watch the footballer he groomed score once more at Old Trafford.

Ronaldo never truly left. He's always been floating around Old Trafford, waiting to strike. It was meant to be on Tuesday.


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