Big shout from Ronaldo…
Cristiano Ronaldomade a big claim about the Saudi Pro League following Al-Nassr’s 3-2 win over Al-Shabab on Tuesday.
The legendary Portuguese forward scored the winner with 30 minutes left on the clock as Al-Nassr came from 2-0 down to win 3-2.
Ronaldo received the ball inside the Al-Shabab half and made a direct run towards goal before firing past opposition goalkeeper Kim Seung-gyu.
It was a stunning goal – one of the best that Ronaldo has scored for Al-Nassr since his arrival in December – and a crucial one, too.
Al-Nassr opened up a 10-point gap between themselves and third-placed Al-Shabab, and remain three points behind leaders Al-Ittihad.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s winner keeps Al Nassr three points behind Al Ittihad with two games remaining 👀🏆 pic.twitter.com/xbW67erQsD
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) May 23, 2023
What did Cristiano Ronaldo say about the Saudi Pro League?
Ronaldo conducted a live interview on the pitch shortly after the full-time whistle.
The 38-year-old was asked by the interviewer what he thought about the quality of the Saudi Pro League.
While Ronaldo was always going to praise the league he’s currently playing in, it was surprising to hear that he believes Saudi Arabia’s top division will become one of the top five leagues in world football.
“We are much better and the Saudi league is getting better and next year will be even better,” he said.
“Step-by-step I think this league will be among the top five leagues in the world but they need time, players and infrastructure.
“But I believe that this country [has] amazing potential, they have amazing people and the league will be great in my opinion.”
Watch Ronaldo’s interview here:
Cristiano Ronaldo’s full interview.
— CristianoXtra (@CristianoXtra_) May 23, 2023
Is Ronaldo right about the Saudi Pro League?
With enough investment, anything is possible.
Still, the idea that the Saudi Pro League will be a top five league in world football still feels a little fanciful right now.
Europe has five strong leagues in the form of the Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga, Serie A and Ligue 1.
There are other good leagues in Europe too, including the Eredivisie and Liga Portugal.
Outside of Europe, meanwhile, there’s the Brazilian Serie A, Major League Soccer in the United States, Mexico’s Liga MX, the Turkish Super Lig, and Argentina’s Primera Division.
The Saudi Pro League still has some catching up to do, although the possibilities are endless if the league attracts more superstars like Ronaldo in the future.