Cristiano Ronaldo to Return for Manchester United vs. Arsenal Following Death of Son

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVApril 22, 2022

Manchester United's Cristiano Ronaldo applauds during warm up before the English Premier League soccer match between Leeds United and Manchester United, at Elland Road Stadium in Leeds, England, Sunday, Feb. 20, 2022. (AP Photo/Jon Super)
AP Photo/Jon Super

Cristiano Ronaldo will be back in the Manchester United squad for Saturday's Premier League match against Arsenal, his first appearance since announcing the death of his son during childbirth on Monday.

"Cristiano Ronaldo is available again; he has been training with us," manager Ralf Rangnick told reporters.

Ronaldo's announcement alongside partner Georgina Rodriguez noted that she gave birth to a twin baby girl.

"We are all devastated at this loss and we kindly ask for privacy at this very difficult time," he said. "Our baby boy, you are our angel. We will always love you."

Cristiano Ronaldo @Cristiano

<a href="https://t.co/vRNVCoegOW">pic.twitter.com/vRNVCoegOW</a>

Ronaldo was absent for United's 4-0 defeat to Liverpool on Tuesday in order to care for his family. During the match, supporters from both teams paid tribute to Ronaldo, including the Liverpool fans singing club anthem "You'll Never Walk Alone" to show their support for the Portuguese star.

B/R Football @brfootball

Anfield showed love to Cristiano Ronaldo's family πŸ‘<br><br>(via <a href="https://twitter.com/beINSPORTS_EN?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@beINSPORTS_EN</a>)<a href="https://t.co/KbWD2j45gN">pic.twitter.com/KbWD2j45gN</a>

Ronaldo said Thursday he and Rodriguez had returned home.

United are sixth in the Premier League table and three points behind Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal, who each have a game in hand, in the race for fourth, the final UEFA Champions League qualification spot.

Ronaldo's return is likely to provide a boost since his 15 goals in the Premier League are the most at the club.