Premier League

Al-Nassr, Cristiano Ronaldo, transfer |

Robin Bairner
Cristiano Ronaldo, Al Nassr, Al Hilal

Cristiano Ronaldo has joined Saudi Pro League side Al-Nassr following his release from Manchester United, according to reports in Saudi Arabia..

Reports in Spain previously suggested that Ronaldo has agreed a two-and-a-half-year deal with Al-Nassr that is worth a total of €500 million and will keep him contracted to the club until the summer of 2025, by which time he will be passed his 40th birthday.

It may well be that this is Ronaldo’s final club, but they are a relatively unknown entity – so just who are they?

MORE: Cristiano Ronaldo agrees €500m deal with Al-Nassr

How good are Al-Nassr?

Al-Nassr play in the Saudi Pro League, which they have won nine times in the past. Their most recent title success was in the 2018/19 season. Last time out, they finished third in the 16-team league.

They were formed in 1955, play at the 25,000 capacity Mrsool Park and wear yellow and blue as their home colours.

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The current Pro League season is only eight games old, with the season consisting of 30 matches. Presently, Al-Nassr lie second in the standings behind only Al-Shabab, who are three points clear. It will be hoped that Ronaldo can help tip the title fight in their favour.

Meanwhile, the Riyadh-based club have experienced continental glory in the past, having won the Asian Cup Winners’ Cup in 1997/98. They have never won the AFC Champions League but did finish as runners-up in the competition in 1995.

This is, therefore, a club that is not in a golden era.

Who are Al-Nassr’s best players?

Al-Nassr’s most famous current player is Colombia international goalkeeper David Ospina, who once turned out for Arsenal.

In addition, they have Cameroon international forward Vincent Aboubakar on their books and striker Anderson Talisca, who formerly played with Benfica and Besiktas.

Six Al-Nassr players are in Saudi Arabia’s 2022 World Cup squad.

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Who is Al-Nassr’s manager?

Al-Nassr’s manager is Rudi Garcia, who was on a shortlist of coaches to become Manchester United interim boss last season after Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was sacked. Ralf Rangnick was selected instead, with the German never getting on with Ronaldo.

Garcia, meanwhile, is best known for his club management in France, where he coached Lille to the Ligue 1 title in 2012. Since then, he has also coached Roma, Marseille and Lyon to a modest degree of success.

Just how long Garcia is in the post for will be questionable. He is Al-Nassr’s sixth coach since 2020. They have had 42 permanent mangers (plus two interims) since 2000.

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