Cristiano Ronaldo set for second Man Utd debut - will he play against Newcastle on Saturday?

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has confirmed returning star Cristiano Ronaldo will make his second Manchester United debut in Saturday's Old Trafford homecoming against Newcastle.

Manchester United's new signing Cristiano Ronaldo arrives to attend a training session at the Carrington. (Photo by PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images)
Manchester United's new signing Cristiano Ronaldo arrives to attend a training session at the Carrington. (Photo by PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images)

The 36-year-old returned to the club he shone for during six medal-laden seasons on deadline day, signing a two-year deal with the option of a further season.

Ronaldo has been training with the club this week and will feature when Newcastle arrive at a bouncing Old Trafford in Saturday's eagerly anticipated Premier League encounter.

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"He's been having a good pre-season with Juventus, he's played for the national team, he's had a good week with us here," the United boss said.

"He will definitely be on the pitch at some point, that's for sure."

Asked about Ronaldo's first few days back at the club, Solskjaer said: "Yeah, he's been good.

"Of course we've followed his career from afar since he left here and I think everyone's very, very happy to have him back.

"He can speak for himself but he seems like he's happy to be back as well.

"The mood's been very good, he's worked well and we're looking forward to Saturday, of course."

Ronaldo appeared to be edging towards a move to Manchester City until United swooped in a fortnight ago, when Solskjaer knew about the return but gave little away at his press conference that day.

The Norwegian said onlookers were "confused" rather than him as the Portuguese adds a new level of quality to the squad, both physically and mentally.

"We have grown as a group the last few years, I have to say," Solskjaer said. "The determination, the desire, the focus has improved over time and bit by bit.

"Even like bringing Raphael (Varane) in, he's come in with a winner's mentality, an unbelievable focus.

"Then of course Cristiano comes in as well and there's no place to hide when you've got winners like them. You can't go into training and give 95 per cent or not being focused.

"That's what he demands of himself and of everyone else, so it's been great having him in."

Newcastle boss Steve Bruce is hoping his players can spoil the former Real Madrid and Juventus star's big afternoon.

Bruce said: "Listen, it's always going to be tough and obviously the added spice of Ronaldo coming back has added to it.

"But make no mistake, they've got quality players all over the pitch, so whenever you go to Old Trafford, the one thing you're going to have to do is enjoy the challenge of playing against one of the big, big teams of this country and relish the opportunity to go and see if we can spoil the party a bit.

"That's the big challenge to us all, of course, the ability for all of us to enjoy upsetting the apple cart and going and making it as difficult an afternoon as we possibly can for Ronaldo or Manchester United or the rest of them.

"They've got quality players all over the pitch and it's one of those where you should really, really relish the challenge that's coming and I hope we respond to it and really have a good go at it."

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