Cristiano Ronaldo lights up Old Trafford with a cross, a smile and a selfie

Some Manchester United fans were desperate to show their love of their former No 7 but he had no sympathy for his opponents on the pitch

When the pitch invader sprinted on to the turf four minutes into the match, there was a sudden nervousness in the air. It is the condition of our times: how did he get there, where was security, why was he running so fast? The skinny man, dressed in jeans and a hoodie, beanie placed precariously on his head, was certainly going at a lick.

As he charged for the East Stand where players from both teams were congregated, stewards finally emerged. They cornered him in a pincer movement and one went for a rugby tackle. The man escaped it with a shimmy. Then, as he reached the penalty box, another tackle hit him, then a third. He was down, but still wriggling, his arm emerging plaintively from the heap. The crowd were watching on in silence, but Cristiano Ronaldo knew what was going on. He walked over to the intruder and touched his outstretched hand. Then the man finally relinquished the struggle; he had got what he wanted.

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