Cristiano Ronaldo broke his goal drought to score Manchester United’s opener in a 2-0 defeat of Brighton & Hove Albion that lifted them into the Premier League’s top four on Tuesday (Feb 15).
Ronaldo, without a goal since December and dropped to the bench by interim manager Ralf Rangnick in some recent matches, struck five minutes after halftime with a superb finish after being played in by Scott McTominay.
Brighton had been the better side before halftime with United again looking disjointed and lacking spark.
But their hopes of responding after falling behind were damaged when Lewis Dunk was sent off after a foul on Anthony Elanga, an initial yellow card being upgraded to red.
Even then United were unconvincing and Brighton’s Jakub Moder curled an effort against the crossbar before former United striker Danny Welbeck headed over a late chance.
Bruno Fernandes gave the scoreline a flattering look with a well-taken solo goal in stoppage time as United moved above West Ham United into fourth spot with 43 points from 25 games.