The Al Nassr captain made his feelings clear about the Saudi Pro League’s future and where it stands compared to the USA’s Major League Soccer.
Cristiano Ronaldo, the captain of Al Nassr, insists the Saudi Pro League is better than the MLS.
In the past week, the MLS welcomed Lionel Messi to the United States. The Argentina captain, a long-time rival of Ronaldo’s, has joined Inter Miami. His arrival is the most high-profile one in US soccer in over a decade, spurring hope for the league’s future.
Yet, while speaking to reporters in Portugal on Monday, Ronaldo made it clear he has no plans to join Messi in the USA.
“The Saudi Pro League is better than the MLS,” he said when asked about a potential move to the US.
Ronaldo spoke to the press following his first-half cameo in Al Nassr’s 5-0 preseason loss to LaLiga side Celta Vigo.
The Portugal captain was in an upbeat mood about the Saudi Pro League’s future. He remarked on the caliber of players that arrived this summer and predicted more top talents will arrive in the coming year.
“In a year, the Saudi league will overtake the Turkish and Dutch leagues,” Ronaldo continued.
“I opened the way,” he added, referencing his own arrival in Saudi Arabia last January. “Now all the players are coming here.”
This summer, the Saudi Pro League has welcomed several high-profile players. These include renowned talents such as Roberto Firmino, Karim Benzema, N’Golo Kante, and Marcelo Brozovic.
They’ll all face off against Ronaldo at some point in the 2023/24 season. It will be the Portuguese icon’s first full season at Al Nassr. He finished the previous one with 14 goals in 16 league games to help his new team to a second-place finish.
Ronaldo, Real Madrid’s all-time leading goalscorer, also said that his days of playing in Europe are over. He believes the level of play has dropped in the continent. He thinks that the only league doing good is the Premier League.
On Thursday, Al Nassr will meet Benfica for another friendly. Ronaldo expects he may play around 60-70 minutes against the Portuguese champions as he works on his fitness levels.