Cristiano Ronaldo is set to join Saudi Arabian club Al-Nassr on January 1, 2023, according to reports. Ronaldo will earn €200 million (£172 million) over the course of two seasons under the terms of the agreement.
Prior to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, the 37-year-old gave an incredible interview in which he discussed his time at Manchester United, criticizing owners and managers Erik ten Hag and Ralf Rangnick.
According to reports in Spain, Cristiano Ronaldo has agreed to a contract with Al-Nassr and will move to Saudi Arabia at the start of 2023.
The end of November saw reports of a “close” deal, and it now appears Ronaldo will play club football outside of Europe for the first time in his career.
According to Marca, a €200 million (£172 million) per season deal has been “completed,” with the Portuguese star expected to sign a two-year contract.
The initial deal will be around €100 million (£86 million), with advertising and sponsorship bringing his wages to a record figure, making him the highest paid athlete in sport.
If the contract is confirmed, it would imply that Ronaldo has no plans to add to his domestic and European club titles, which include five Champions Leagues, three Premier Leagues, two La Ligas, and a number of cup competitions.
There had been rumours that Ronaldo would return to Sporting Lisbon, where he began his professional career.
Ronaldo has been a major talking point since the beginning of the season, when he was benched by new Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag.
Ten Hag’s decision not to start the 37-year-old and instead ask him to come on in the final minutes of United’s 2-0 win over Tottenham, before Ronaldo refused and walked off before the final whistle, has sparked debate.
Ronaldo was named captain in United’s 3-1 defeat to Aston Villa, his final game for the club.
Then, during an interview with Piers Morgan on TalkTV, Ronaldo stated that he felt “betrayed” and that Ten Hag “didn’t show respect” to him.
He slammed the club, claiming there had been “no evolution” since his departure from Old Trafford in 2009.
Ronaldo’s contract with United was terminated with immediate effect on November 22, and he has been playing as a free agent in Qatar for the 2022 World Cup.
With his penalty against Ghana in Portugal’s dramatic 3-2 win, he became the first man to score in five World Cups.
Despite a surprise loss to South Korea, Portugal qualified as group winners and will face Switzerland in the last 16 on Tuesday.