Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo Joins Juventus Photo by MB Media/Getty Images

Manchester United picked up its first Europa League win of the season by defeating Sheriff Tiraspol 2-0 in Moldova on Thursday evening, and Cristiano Ronaldo played a big role in the victory.

Goals from Ronaldo and Jadon Sancho helped Erik ten Hag's side win, reported Mirror. The latest victory means that Man Utd will head into the international break on a high note. But before that they will take on local rivals Manchester City in the Premier League at the Etihad on Oct. 2.

As for Ronaldo, he stepped up and scored his first goal of the season and his 699th club goal. It ended a goal-drought of seven games. Also, there was no doubt that Ronaldo was the star attraction in Chisinau, Moldova. He might no longer be one of the world's best football players, but he will remain a superstar for the rest of his days. The five-time Ballon d'Or winner's name received the loudest cheer of all during the match, reported Manchester Evening News.

He scored from the penalty spot in the 39th minute for Man Utd’s second. Then the crowd seemed to shout out his trademark "Siu" celebration as he jumped to the sky with his arms outstretched. According to The Sun, seeing Ronaldo scoring a goal is still something special for those who don’t get to see him live.

The penalty was awarded to Man Utd after a foul by Patrick Kpozo on Diogo Dalot. As soon as the referee pointed to the spot, there was no question who was taking it. Ronaldo took the shot and that doubled Man Utd’s lead.

A few weeks ago, Ten Hag was preparing for a busy September, with the team facing a daunting schedule. The team had six games in 19 days before the international break. That changed when two Premier League fixtures were postponed after the death of Queen Elizabeth last week.

Ten Hag didn't need to rest players or rotate his squad against Sheriff, and 10 of the 11 who started the 3-1 win against Arsenal earlier this month were deployed against the Moldovan outfit. Ronaldo came in for the injured Marcus Rashford. Their manager's decision to play what he believes is his strongest XI right now was an indication of just how much the latest game meant to Man Utd. Following last week's loss to Real Sociedad at Old Trafford, it was important that the team didn't suffer another defeat to Sheriff.

Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo of Manchester United catches his breath during the UEFA Europa League group E match between Sheriff Tiraspol and Manchester United at Stadionul Sheriff on September 15, 2022 in Tiraspol, Moldova. Photo by MB Media/Getty Images

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