Monster deal in Saudi Arabia does not include World Cup ambassadorship for Cristiano Ronaldo


In two and a half years, Cristiano Ronaldo will earn about 400 million euros in Saudi Arabia, AFP news agency learned 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.


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. The club denies this in a statement published on Wednesday. “Cristiano’s contract contains no commitments regarding a World Cup bid,” it sounds.

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.

Al-Nassr won nine league titles, the last of which came in 2019. In 1995, the club was runner-up in the Asian Champions League, in 1998 it won the Cup Winners’ Cup. There is no international trophy yet and CR7 must change that. The other well-known players at the club are Colombian goalkeeper David Ospina, and Brazilian midfielders Luiz Gustavo and Anderson Talisca. The Frenchman Rudi Garcia is the trainer.

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