Ronaldo, 22, is well aware of Cantona's Old Trafford legacy - and is doing his best to live up to it. His sensational free-kick in the 2-1 win over his former Sporting Lisbon team-mates was his 11th goal of the season and his ninth in the last eight games.
Ronaldo said: "It's great to be compared with a player of Cantona's reputation because he was so important for United.
"I met him when we were doing an advert for Nike called ?The Secret Tournament' when there were a lot of players in a cage with Eric as the ringmaster. And we've done other adverts together since then.
"He's a great guy and I enjoyed meeting him. I know what he meant to United and what he helped achieve in his time at the club.
"I'm a big fan of Cantona, not just because of what he achieved as a player, but because of the person he is.
"He always speaks well about the United team and the players. It is an honour to be talked about alongside him.
"But every player is different. Cantona had a different style to me, I have a different style to him. But it's great to be compared with him. Things like that give me extra motivation to work hard and become a better player."