Ronaldo Hat-trick Rescues Manchester United A Win Against Norwich. Cristiano Ronaldo scored his second hat-trick in three Premier League games as Manchester United beat relegation-threatened Norwich at Old Trafford to enhance their chances of qualifying for next season’s Champions League.
Ronaldo appeared to have placed United in command when he scored twice in the first 32 minutes, knowing that a win would put them within three points of the top four.
However, poor defense from the hosts both before and after the break allowed Norwich to equalize through Kieran Dowell and Teemu Pukki, and Dean Smith’s side appeared the more likely winners for a time.
However, 14 minutes from time, Ronaldo smashed a free-kick home off the inside of a post to secure victory after Ralf Rangnick had ditched his brave plan of playing without a renowned ball-winner in midfield and substituted Paul Pogba with Juan Mata.
The 37-year-old has 15 Premier League goals this season, second only to Mo Salah and Son Hueng-min in the table. He has also scored 99 Premier League goals in his career.
If United defeats Liverpool on Tuesday, they would draw level on points with fourth-placed Spurs.
Norwich’s slim chances of avoiding relegation were dealt a serious setback by the result. Having played two games more and only six matches remaining, the Canaries are now seven points behind fourth-bottom Everton.