Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo may have one more big transfer lined up as he was unlikely to say bid adieu to soccer while at Saudi Arabian club Al Nassr.
Ronaldo, five-time Ballon d’Or winner, joined the Saudi Pro League soon after leaving Manchester United under a cloud last year, The Mirror reported.
He had taken part in an explosive interview with Piers Morgan, during which he took aim at everything from the Red Devils’ owners to current manager Erik ten Hag. His comments made his own position at Old Trafford untenable and his contract was terminated by mutual consent.
Weeks later, the soccer star signed a lucrative deal with the Saudi side, but it appears as if Al-Nassr is not where he sees himself ending what has been an illustrious career.
In the immediate aftermath of his arrival in the Middle East, Ronaldo told the media that he considered his time in Europe “over” and that he was keen on conquering another continent.
He claimed: “I am fortunate that I have won everything I set out to win in European football. I feel now that this is the right moment to share my experience in Asia.”
However, Rudi Garcia, who was manager of Al-Nassr at the time of Ronaldo’s signing but was removed four months later, insisted that the five-time Champions League winner will play for a European side once again.
Speaking in January of last year, Garcia told reporters: ” Cristiano Ronaldo is a positive addition, as he helps to disperse defenders. He is one of the best players in the world. He will not finish his career at Al-Nassr, he will return to Europe.”
In that time, Ronaldo has shown no sign of slowing down on the goalscoring front. In fact, the Portugal captain ended 2023 as the top goal scorer at club level across the world, with 54 strikes in 59 Al-Nassr games.
Ronaldo took to Instagram and addressed those who feel his career is winding down. He wrote: “54 — I’ll say when it’s finished! Thanks, team.”
Ronaldo has recently been the subject of interest from a Premier League side, with Newcastle United believed to be mulling over a potential bid to bring the football icon back to the English top flight. The Magpies share the same owners as Al-Nassr in the Public Investment Fund (PIF).