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Saudi Arabian club president confirms Cristiano Ronaldo transfer talks

Cristiano Ronaldo
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The five-time Ballon d’Or winner reportedly sought a transfer away from Man Utd in the summer.

Fahad ben Nafel, the president of record 18-time Saudi Arabian champions Al-Hilal, has claimed he held talks with Cristiano Ronaldo over a potential transfer.

Various reports claimed Ronaldo tried to leave Manchester United in the summer after a disappointing season back, where the club failed to qualify for the Champions League following a sixth-place Premier League finish.

A surprise move to Saudi Arabia was mooted at one point during the summer. It was alleged that Ronaldo had a two-season contract offer worth  €300 million to play in the Middle East.

Ben Nafel reveals his side of the story

“Yes, we [ Al-Hilal] negotiated with Ronaldo,” Ben Nafel told the Thamanya YouTube channel.

“The problem was not in the money or the principle, Al-Hilal is able to bring in the stars of the world, but it was in the decision of the Sports Arbitration Center that prevented us from registering the players.

“We did not stop negotiating with the players despite the decision to ban, but we were delaying entering the final stage of the negotiations until the ban was lifted.”

Ronaldo’s current deal with United runs out next summer, although there is an option to extend it by another 12 months until 2024.