Manchester United star Bruno Fernandes said he always believed the Red Devils could win after Cristiano Ronaldo’s stoppage-time winner completed a stunning 2-1 Champions League comeback against Villarreal.
United were staring at back-to-back defeats to start their Group F campaign when Paco Alcacer gave visiting Villarreal a 1-0 lead in a repeat of last season’s Europa League final at Old Trafford on Wednesday.
Villarreal upstaged United in the Europa League decider, but they were unable to shock Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s underperforming side again as Alex Telles equalised with a spectacular volley on the hour before Ronaldo sparked wild celebrations via his 95th-minute strike.
It was a largely frustrating night for United in Manchester, where the Premier League giants relied on some spectacular goalkeeping from David de Gea to remain in the contest, however stand-in captain Fernandes was always confident of a result.
“I always thought we could win, even after they scored,” Fernandes, who wore the armband in the absence of injured skipper Harry Maguire, told BT Sport.
“I felt we could always come back into the game and turn it around. After the goal of Alex everyone feels the atmosphere, it was unbelievable. The push from the fans was incredible.
“Some big saves from David who helps a lot to keep us in the game.
“After that at the end Cristiano, strikers always have the feeling to score, and he had it once again.”
THIS. TEAM. NEVER. GIVES. UP! pic.twitter.com/JRLRTVV4ow
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) September 29, 2021
United have lost only once in their last 13 home games in all European competition (W10 D2), with Ronaldo the first Red Devils player to score a 90th-minute winner in the Champions League since Marouane Fellaini against Young Boys in November 2018.
Ronaldo (36 years and 236 days) became the second oldest United player to score a goal in European competition at Old Trafford after Bryan Robson (36y 282d) against Galatasaray in 1993.
No player has scored more 90th-minute winning goals in champions League history than Ronaldo (three) – level with Sergio Aguero.
It comes after United superstar Ronaldo who made his 178th Champions League appearance – breaking the record for most games played by a single player.
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