It can’t always be a price: despite Saudi monster deal of 400 (!) Million, Cristiano Ronaldo falls by the wayside in the popular vote

©  AP

In two and a half years, Cristiano Ronaldo will earn about 400 million euros in Saudi Arabia, AFP news agency learned on Monday from a source close to the club Al-Nassr, who took over the 37-year-old Portuguese international on a free transfer at the end of last month.

Jens HeylenBron: BELGIAN

CR7 earns half of that amount as a player for Al-Nassr, the other 200 million euros for his services as ambassador of Saudi Arabia’s joint candidacy with Egypt and Greece to win the 2030 World Cup. At the end of last year, the World Cup was organized in neighboring Qatar.

According to the same source, the agreement with Cristiano Ronaldo came through the intercession of the royal family of Saudi Arabia, especially Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. “MbS and his brothers Naif, Turki and Rakan, have long been honorary members of Al-Nassr. They wanted to put their club in the spotlight and at the same time strengthen it sportively. Attracting the best player in the world was simply the best way to do it,” says the anonymous source, who also says that the capital for the mega deal was raised from the sovereign wealth fund PIF (Public Investment Fund). “Al-Nassr and by extension all other Saudi clubs do not have the resources to honor such a contract. PIF guarantees the payment.”

The Saudi state investment fund has been pumping more and more money into the sports world for several years now. Last year, they took over Premier League club Newcastle United. In addition, they also finance the controversial LIV golf circuit, which is attracting more and more top golfers and is causing a real break in the golf world.

Not in 100 nominees on FIFA 23

Despite that monster deal, there is less fun news for Ronaldo in the virtual world. On the popular football game FIFA 23, the Portuguese is not among the 100 nominees for the Team of the Year. Players who had a strong season will be rewarded by developer EA Sports for their performance in this annual event. Due to the lesser year that Ronaldo went through in 2022, EA Sports did not include him in the list. From Tuesday, fans can vote for a week on what they think is the best team of the past year.

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