EPL

Ronaldo back in Man Utd starting XI at Brentford

By Sports Desk August 13, 2022

Cristiano Ronaldo was named in Manchester United's starting XI for the first time this season as Erik ten Hag targeted his first win for the club away to Brentford.

Ronaldo started last weekend's shock 2-1 home defeat to Brighton and Hove Albion on the bench due to concerns over his fitness.

The 37-year-old was absent for much of United's pre-season, missing their tour of Thailand and Australia for personal reasons amid widespread reports he wanted to leave.

Ten Hag has been adamant throughout his first few months in charge that United have been planning with Ronaldo for the 2022-23 season, ruling out a departure.

United will hope Ronaldo's return to the team coincides with an improvement in their fortunes on the pitch – with Anthony Martial injured, the Red Devils looked ineffective in attack against Brighton before the Portugal striker's introduction as the focal point.

Christian Eriksen started as a false nine against Brighton before reverting to a deeper role in the second half, and he was selected in midfield again upon his return to the Brentford Community Stadium.

The Dane spent the final months of last season at Brentford following his release by Inter, with his influential performances essentially earning his move to United.

Other than Ronaldo starting in place of Scott McTominay, Ten Hag named an unchanged team to the one beaten by Brighton.

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