Cristiano Ronaldo’s Influence in the Saudi Pro League

Since Cristiano Ronaldo's transfer to Al-Nassr in late December of 2022, overnight he has made the Saudi Pro League one of the most popular leagues around the world, bringing other famous players into different teams of this league as well. 

Ronaldo, at the age of 18, made his debut in Manchester United in 2003 becoming a sensation to the sport of futbol scoring over 100 goals in six seasons and bringing light into his path as a professional futbol player. 

Over the years he has played for Juventus and Real Madrid including returning to Manchester United in 2021. After performing one season in Manchester United, he and the club decided to mutually end his contract early with the English team. 

After that agreement, Ronaldo had received an offer from the Saudi Arabian team, Al-Nassr, consisting of a contract until 2025 and getting paid a whopping $215 million per season. Since then, Cristiano had taken the offer and transferred in late 2022. 

This transfer struck futbol history since one of the worlds best futbol players took an offer in all places, Saudi Arabia? Many had comments to say about this transfer saying it was ridiculous and unprofessional of Cristiano to choose that path in his career after having such a success in his whole career before then. 

Aside from all the backlash he received, he became very influential in the league, having many other clubs considering dropping millions of dollars to sign other professional futbol players. The club Al-Ittihad, had signed Neymar Jr. who had previously played with PSG F.C. with a $97.8 million contract along with Karim Benzema who signed over with Al Hilal for a $200 million contract. 

Both players had been given a big contract and a new experience in the futbol world in a new country, along with Ronaldo. Many other players such as Alex Telles and Sergej Milinkovic-Savic. had been signed to the Saudi Pro League since then, having over 16 big top players in the Saudi Pro League since Ronaldo’s transfer.