After two weeks of build-up, the return of Cristiano Ronaldo to Manchester United is finally here. The Portuguese star is set to see his first action with the Red Devils since his $28-million transfer from Juventus, as the club hosts Newcastle United at Old Trafford (10 a.m. ET on USA Network, Universo and fuboTV ). He will be in the starting lineup.
Ronaldo’s last appearance in a Manchester United jersey at Old Trafford came back in May 2009 and it ended with celebrations after another English Premier League title. It was one of several conquests during his years at the club between 2003 to 2009, when he became a global star. The 36-year-old is a different player today, evolving from an unstoppable winger in his teen years to an expert goal-scoring forward today.
Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be giving Ronaldo the start after confirming he’d see action a day earlier. Ronaldo started in his last competitive appearance for Portugal in a Sept. 1 win over the Republic of Ireland. That has been his only start in an official game since his last match at the Euros in June. He also came off the bench for Juventus in its first Serie A match of the season before his transfer.
Ronaldo joins a Manchester United team which finds itself in third place in the English Premier League standings after an undefeated start with two wins and a draw. Meanwhile, winless Newcastle are already in the relegation zone after three matches, including two losses.
Sporting News will be following the Manchester United vs. Newcastle match and providing live scores, updates and highlights as they happen.
Manchester United vs. Newcastle United LIVE score
MANU — Cristiano Ronaldo — 47th+ min.
NEW — Javier Manquillo (Allan Saint-Maximin, Miguel Almiron) — 56th min.
MANU — Cristiano Ronaldo (Luke Shaw) — 62nd min.
(All times Eastern)
66th min.: SUB – Jesse Lingard comes on for Jadon Sancho, who had a quiet game. Meanwhile, a Manchester United corner finds Raphael Varane, but nothing comes of it.
62nd min.: The tie didn’t last long. Ronaldo again! Luke Shaw in transition feeds the returning hero and he fires a left-footed shot under the ‘keeper. Two goals on his return. Wow. Man United up 2-1.
58th min.: Newcastle come close again! Almiron nearly connects with Saint-Maximin on a cross in the Manchester United box. Almiron is having a strong game.
56th min.: Goal Newcastle! Both Almiron and Saint-Maximin get on the ball and the latter serves it perfectly for an unmarked Javier Manquillo who fires home. It’s 1-1!
52nd min.: It’s the same script of the first half so far: Man United looking for a way through, and Newcastle trying to relieve pressure with some sustained possession. When the Magpies get Miguel Almiron or Allan Saint-Maximin on the ball, they’re more unpredictable going forward.
46th min.: The second half is underway. No changes.
Halftime: Manchester United 1, Newcastle United 0
Halftime: Manchester United was the better team to start, but the match grew more evenly matched as the minutes went by. Newcastle was organized on defense and Man United only got three shots on goal. Ronaldo was active early, but then the touches waned and when they did come, Newcastle were all over him. The poke-home on a spilled shot is exactly the type of goal that first half deserved. Pressure’s off on Ronaldo and Manchester United.
47th+ min.: Goal Ronaldo! And just when it looked like the half was destined to end 0-0, a Mason Greenwood shot was spilled by the goalkeeper and there was Ronaldo who took the gift and poked home the rebound.
45th min.: Two minutes of stoppage time. No one expected Newcastle to hold Manchester United for this long.
39th min.: Ronaldo double-teamed and his shot in the box is stuffed. Ball bounces out to Fernandes, but nothing comes of his cross into the box.
38th min.: Newcastle center back Jamaal Lascelles bumps Ronaldo off the ball on one instance and then a few minutes later clears a ball in the box before it can get to Ronaldo.
33rd min.: Ronaldo is lurking, but he’s not been nearly involved as he was in the opening stages of the match. Newcastle has settled into the match nicely. The Magpies are defending deep, but they’re not scrambling just yet.
30th min.: Bruno Fernandes attempts to make up for it with a shot from outside the box that Jadon Sancho nearly deflects on goal. Ball finishes wide.
28th min.: What a chance for Newcastle! Bruno Fernandes is picked off in his own half, but Joe Willock fires high from the right side of the box instead of passing it.
27th min.: Newcastle’s goalkeeper gets a talking to from the referee for time wasting. Newcastle is milking every second on dead balls, including on this particular goal kick.
26th min.: Not to be outshone by his compatriot, Bruno Fernandes attempts an audacious 35-yard shot lob over the ‘keeper but it finishes over the target. He’s serenaded by the Old Trafford crowd.
25th min.: Saint-Maximin wins a corner after his cross from the left goes dangerously across the goal and Luke Shaw clears. Nothing comes of it.
23rd min.: Newcastle gaining in confidence when they’re in Manchester United’s half. First Miguel Almiron and then Matt Ritchie fire shots without hesitation. The last one was Ritchie’s and David de Gea has to dive to stop it.
19th min.: A Varane header off a corner kick finishes wide right. That was dangerous.
17th min.: Ronaldo keeping it simple, making quick connecting passes when he’s not in the vicinity of the penalty area.
16th min.: Manchester United’s buzzing start has now fizzled out some. Newcastle getting some spells of possession in the Manchester half.
11th min.: Ronaldo again! He runs at the Newcastle defense down the left side of the box but the shot hits the side netting. He’s definitely going for it. He senses the occasion.
9th min.: Ronaldo attempts a half-volley from a tough angle after Ciaran Clark’s header stays up in the air. It goes wide, but that was a tough shot.
7th min.: Newcastle’s No. 7 Joelinton puts Man United’s Varane under pressure, wins the ball and fires a weak shot at goal. He should’ve done better. Newcastle won’t get many of those looks.
5th min.: It’s all Manchester United to start here. Ronaldo got close to a ball in the box, but no clear looks just yet.
1st min.: We’re off
9:56 a.m.: The players have already taken the field to start the match:
— Chris Waugh (@ChrisDHWaugh) September 11, 2021
9:49 a.m.: Ronaldo received a loud ovation when he stepped out onto the field for warmups:
9:12 a.m.: And it’s confirmed: Ronaldo in the starting lineup:
8:27 a.m.: Coming off the team bus:
7:59 a.m.: The match program cover for today’s match:
Solskjaer in his programme notes: “It’s a very special transfer for various reasons. Ever since the announcement, there’s been a buzz around the club. Supporters, staff and players; they’re all thrilled to have him in the squad.” pic.twitter.com/iosHy4zqRd
— Rob Dawson (@RobDawsonESPN) September 11, 2021
7:50 a.m.: He’s definitely stopping to give autographs.
6:33 a.m.: Chance to bust out the old Ronaldo jerseys for the big game:
6:10 a.m.: Yeah, they’re excited in Manchester:
5:54 a.m.: A grand return no one saw coming just a couple weeks back is about to happen:
Manchester United vs. Newcastle United: Starting lineups
Cristiano Ronaldo starts, but Edinson Cavani is not in the squad. Jadon Sancho was a doubt with a knock picked up while with England, but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer confirmed he was good to go and he gets the start.
Scott McTominay and Alex Telles are not ready for selection just yet, and Marcus Rashford is still out due to shoulder surgery. Goalkeeper Dean Henderson is making his way back from the after-effects of COVID-19, but he got the start for the Under-23s along with Phil Jones .
Manchester United starting lineup (4-2-3-1, left to right): 1-David de Gea-GK — 23-Luke Shaw, 5-Harry Maguire, 19-Raphael Varane, 29-Aaron Wan-Bissaka — 31-Nemanja Matic, 6-Paul Pogba — 25-Jadon Sancho, 18-Bruno Fernandes, 11-Mason Greenwood — 7-Cristiano Ronaldo
Manchester United subs (9): 22-Tom Heaton-GK, 2-Victor Lindelof, 3-Eric Bailly, 20-Diogo Dalot, 17-Fred, 34-Donny Van de Beek, 14-Jesse Lingard, 8-Juan Mata, 9-Anthony Martial
Newcastle United will be missing midfielder Jonjo Shelvey (calf), forward Callum Wilson (thigh), midfielder Ryan Fraser (ankle), and goalkeeper Martin Dubravka (foot) due to injury. Goalkeeper Karl Darlow , who has been in training for some time after a bout with COVID-19, is on the bench.
Newcastle United starting lineup (3-4-3, left to right): 27-Freddie Woodman-GK — 6-Jamaal Lascelles, 2-Ciaran Clark, 14-Isaac Hayden — 11-Matt Ritchie, 36-Sean Longstaff, 28-Joe Willock, 19-Javier Manquillo — 10-Allan Saint-Maximin, 24-Miguel Almiron, 7-Joelinton
Newcastle United subs (9): 26-Karl Darlow-GK, 18-Federico Fernandez, 5-Fabian Schar, 17-Emil Krafth, 12-Jamal Lewis, 23-Jacob Murphy, 16-Jeff Hendrick, 36-Joe White, 34-Dwight Gayle
How to watch Ronaldo’s debut in the USA
- Date: Saturday, Sept. 11
- Time: 10 a.m. ET
- TV channel: USA Network
- Spanish-language TV: Universo
- Streaming: fuboTV
Ronaldo’s first official match back for Manchester United will come at home against Newcastle United in a match that will be televised by USA Network (English) and Universo (Spanish). Both channels are streamed on fuboTV, which offers a free seven-day trial .