Ronaldo late equaliser rescues draw for Manchester United


Cristiano Ronaldo has salvaged a stunning draw for Manchester United against Atalanta in Bergamo, with the Portuguese star scoring a the second minute of stoppage time to rescue a 2-2 draw.

Ronaldo had earlier equalised in first-half stoppage time, cancelling out Josip Iličić’s 12th-minute opener. 

Atalanta retook the lead just before the hour mark through Duván Zapata, but could not hold on as Manchester United pushed forward in search of the equaliser.

That equaliser came when Ronaldo pounced on a loose ball on the edge of the box, blasting home into the corner of the goal.

“We never give up, we believe until the end, it is a good result for us,” Ronaldo said.

“We have to still improve, we have different players, different system, we have to adapt with each other, but it will take time. We have time to improve and be better.”

The winner was Ronaldo’s fifth goal of the campaign and the fourth-straight Champions League match in which he has scored for Manchester United.

The late goal papered over more cracks for United’s under-fire coach Ole Gunnar Solskjær, whose side were outplayed for long periods by their Serie A opponents.

Elsewhere in the group, Villarreal beat Young Boys 2-0 thanks to a goal in each half from Étienne Capoue and Arnaut Danjuma Groeneveld.

Lewandowski hat-trick leads Bayern Muinch to qualify

Robert Lewandowski points to his chest and opens his mouth with his other arm out to the side
Robert Lewandowski had a busy night on his 100th Champions League appearance.(Getty Images: Stefan Matzke – sampics/Corbis)

In Group E, Robert Lewandowski scored a hat-trick, set up another goal and missed a penalty in his 100th Champions League appearance as Bayern Munich crushed Benfica Lisbon 5-2 on Tuesday to cruise into the knockout stage.

The Pole headed in his first goal in the 26th minute and chipped in another just past the hour after also setting up Serge Gnabry for a sensational backheel flick in the 32nd.

The striker missed a penalty in first half stoppage time but sealed his hat-trick in the 85th minute. It was his 81st goal in the competition.

Benfica cut the deficit before the break with Morato’s 38th minute header which was the first goal conceded by Bayern in four Champions League matches, but a superb Leroy Sane shot early in the second half had killed off any hopes of a comeback.

The visitors scored again in the 75th with Darwin Nunez.

Bayern are top on 12 points following their fourth win in the group, with Benfica stuck on four.

Barcelona moved into second place on six after beating Dynamo Kyiv, who are last with one point.

Ansu Fati scored a second-half winner to boost injury-hit and manager-less Barcelona’s chances of advancing to the knockout rounds.

Fati, making his first Champions League start in nearly a year, scored his third goal of the season with his strike in the 70th minute. 

Chelsea break down stubborn Malmö

Hakim Ziyech clenches his fist and looks up as Chelsea players hug behind him
Hakim Ziyech scored the only goal of the game in Malmö.(Getty Images: David Lidstrom)

Elsewhere, Chelsea made hard work of Swedish champions Malmö, winning 1-0 thanks to a Hakim Ziyech strike in Sweden.

Chelsea, who hammered Malmö 4-0 when the sides met in London two weeks ago, remain second in the standings, behind leaders Juventus, who hammered Zenit St Petersburg 4-2 in Turin.

Juventus booked their spot in the Champions League last 16 with two group games to spare after a double from Argentine striker Paulo Dybala plus goals from Federico Chiesa and Alvaro Morata.

Malmö, who are yet to score a goal in this year’s group stage, remain bottom without a point. The defeat was their fourth in four games and means that they can no longer make the knockouts.

Malmö goalkeeper Johan Dahlin couldn’t hide his disappointment as his side left empty-handed, despite putting in their best defensive performance of the group stage so far.

“I think that defensively it went well, we have a game-plan we followed, but they had a lot of chances. At the same time I think we should have had a little more luck with our chances and gotten something out of it,” he said.



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