Cristiano Ronaldo has urged his Manchester United teammates to silence their critics and "prove themselves to the world" during their Champions League clash with Atalanta.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer' s side are currently in a particularly dismal run of form that has seen them pick up just two wins from their last seven.

United welcome Atalanta to Old Trafford for their third Champions League game of their group stage campaign, with one win and one defeat under their belt.

Their last league outing came at the King Power Stadium against LeicesterCity - United falling to a 4-2 defeat at the hands of the Foxes.

Cristiano Ronaldo's performance against Leicester City sparked criticism from some quarters (



Though Ronaldo has impressed since his triumphant return in August, the Portuguese icon came in for the first real criticism he has faced since he re-joined from Juventus.

However, his manager has since leapt to the former Real Madrid man's defence and quashed any talk of Ronaldo's lack of pressing in recent weeks.

"We’ve got 11 players out there on the pitch," the United boss told the media during his pre-match presser.

"We have different roles and responsibilities and we have a team out there that we really think is going to win that game.

"We didn’t against Leicester so there is always going to be criticism.

"And Cristiano is an absolute top player, we know what he can do for us, he is doing everything he can do to help the team."

Solskjaer was also pressed on what morale is currently like within the United dressing room.

"It is not a jovial happy camp, they are focused and determined," the Norwegian revealed.

"Conceding four goals is a big eye-opener for us."

United's previous Champions League contest saw Ronaldo net a last-gasp winner to seal a smash and grab 2-1 victory over Unai Emery's Villarreal - who spent large portions of the game on top.

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Cristiano Ronaldo has received the backing of his manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (


Alex Pantling/Getty Images)

The iconic number seven is clearly eager to right Saturday's wrongs - as he took to Instagram to send a message of motivation to teammates and fans alike.

Often a man for the big occasion, Ronaldo will be ready and raring to make amends for the recent string of underwhelming displays.

"Our time is coming!" Ronaldo wrote, "We have to show what we are made of and the Champions League is the perfect competition to prove ourselves to the world.

"No excuses! Let’s go!"

Given United's daunting run of upcoming league fixtures against a number of their fellow 'big six', a win against Atalanta cold provide the perfect springboard to build momentum.

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