Cristiano Ronaldo joins Saudi Arabian club Al-Nassr on two-year deal

 (@AlNassrFC)
(@AlNassrFC)

Former Manchester United forward Cristiano Ronaldo has officially signed for Saudi Arabian club Al-Nassr.

The 37-year-old was released from his Old Trafford contract in November after giving a series of interviews criticising the club, where he had lost his place in the team under Erik ten Hag.

Having also played for Sporting CP, Real Madrid and Juventus during his career, as well as an earlier spell with United, he now moves outside of Europe for the first time and has signed a two-year contract.

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Ronaldo had only scored once in the Premier League during the 2022/23 campaign with the Red Devils, often being left among the subs and in October being suspended by the club for a game after refusing to come on for the final few minutes, before leaving the match early.

United announced his departure with immediate effect shortly after the start of the World Cup 2022, where the forward was captaining his national team.

There in Qatar, Ronaldo scored a penalty against Ghana in the group stage before losing his starting place to Goncalo Ramos and exiting what will surely be his final World Cup in tears as Portugal suffered a shock quarter-final defeat to Morocco.

The Portugal No7 detailed in an interview how he had turned down an offer to go to Saudi Arabia last summer, but he now heads to the Saudi Pro League’s second-most successful side. Prior to signing he had appeared to insist he could still perform at the highest level, whether United or another top team in Europe.

“It’s difficult to tell you 100 per cent, but let’s say I regret [not coming on as sub], but in the same way I felt provoked by the coach,” he said. “Not allowed for me, a coach to put me in three minutes in a game. Sorry, I’m not that kind of player. I know what I can give to teams.”

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