Cristiano Ronaldo has joined the Premier League’s ‘100 club’ after netting for Manchester United against Arsenal.
The 37-year-old missed United’s trip to Liverpool earlier in the week after announcing on Monday the passing of one of his and girlfriend Georgina Rodriguez’s twin babies.
He returned to action against United’s top four rivals Arsenal and could only watch as the Gunners took an early two-goal lead in north London – strikes from Nuno Tavares and Bukayo Saka piling further pressure on a United side desperately struggling to qualify for the Champions League.
But Ronaldo, as he often seems to do in big games, showed great predatory instincts to get United back into the game, peeling off Gabriel Magalhaes to steer Nemanja Matic’s cross past Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale.
The goal was Ronaldo’s 16th of the season and, more importantly, the 100th of his Premier League career.
He becomes the 33th player in the history of the competition to reach the landmark, following in the footsteps of United greats like Wayne Rooney, Paul Scholes and Robin van Persie.
223 appearances is how many games it took Ronaldo to make it to three figures, though the first three years of his United career comprised off 95 appearances and 18 goals from right midfield – meaning he has now netted 82 times in 128 games since becoming a wide forward or striker.