Cristiano Ronaldo is widely regarded as the greatest player in UEFA Champions League history. Twelve years ago, Manchester United, spearheaded by Cristiano Ronaldo, produced one of their finest moments in the modern era.
To remember the occasion, Cristiano Ronaldo shared a story on Instagram, as he won the competition for the first time with the Red Devils.
On this day in 2008, Manchester United won the UEFA Champions League for the third time in their history. In what was an all EPL final, the Red Devils locked horns with Chelsea in a star-studded clash in Moscow.
As the EPL sides went head to head, Manchester United dominated the opening exchanges and took the lead. Cristiano Ronaldo, who was the best player in the world at the time, rose above the Chelsea defence and planted a towering header best Petr Cech to break the deadlock.
Shortly before the interval, EPL legend Frank Lampard got his name on the scoresheet, as the ball fell kindly to him inside the box after a ricochet. In what was a tightly contested final between two EPL sides in the top of their games, the game finished 1-1 after regulation time.
The EPL sides failed to find the back of the net in the second half, due to which penalties were needed to decide the winner of European football's premier club competition.
Cristiano Ronaldo's not so costly miss
Sensationally, Cristiano Ronaldo of all people missed his spot-kick, as Cech produced a brilliant save to keep his side in the game. EPL legend John Terry had a chance to win the game for his side, as he stepped up to take the final penalty.
However, the Englishman slipped and blazed the ball wide, giving the Red Devils a new lease of life. Nicolas Anelka eventually missed his penalty, and Manchester United prevailed in what was an intense final between two EPL greats.
Cristiano Ronaldo took to Instagram to celebrate the moment, as he looked back on his time at Manchester United. The Portuguese international has won the UEFA Champions League a staggering five times and is the highest goalscorer in the history of the competition.
The Portuguese hitman won the competition for the first time in 2008. Since moving to Real Madrid a year later, Cristiano Ronaldo won the competition four times with Los Blancos, cementing his status as an all-time great.
While Chelsea's night ended in tears in Moscow, they returned to the final against all the odds in 2012. Facing a star-studded Bayern Munich side on their own turf, the Blues recorded a sensational victory to clinch their first-ever UCL title.
Manchester United and Cristiano Ronaldo may have gone separate ways since 2009, but there is widespread admiration for the Portuguese international at Old Trafford. Additionally, Cristiano Ronaldo is himself fond of the Red Devils and speaks glowingly of former manager Sir Alex Ferguson.
Cristiano Ronaldo is expected to return to action next month, as football prepares to resume in Europe after a two-month hiatus owing to the coronavirus.