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Manchester United history.
15 years ago today, a Portuguese teenager scored his first of many Man Utd goals

It all started with a scrappy free-kick against Portsmouth.

The exciting substitute performance against Bolton in mid-August 2003 usually sparks conversation among Reds. Everyone remembers that 30-minute cameo display as it marked Cristiano Ronaldo’s competitive debut for Manchester United.

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But Ronaldo had to wait until the start of November to score his first goal for the club.

The Portuguese teenager made his appearance as a substitute, along with then-captain Roy Keane, to give United an extra lift despite already leading through Diego Forlan’s first-half strike.

It took Ronaldo just four minutes before he made a goalscoring impact on the game, and moments later fellow substitute Keane increased United’s lead to three goals.

Ronaldo would go on to make a total of 292 appearances for the club, scoring 118 goals, before leaving in 2009 to join Real Madrid. He’s currently playing for Juventus after a mega-money move this past summer.

A look at the team-sheet from that day in 2003 will bring back some memories.

Tim Howard, Gary Neville, John O’Shea, Rio Ferdinand, Quinton Fortune, Darren Fletcher, Nicky Butt, Eric Djemba-Djemba, Ryan Giggs, Diego Forlan, Ruud van Nistelrooy.

And, it wasn’t his last free-kick to hit the net against Portsmouth!

Watch Ronaldo’s first goal for United below:

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