French manager Pascal Dupraz has suggested that Cristiano Ronaldo would have received an offer from a European club had he agreed to lower his wage demands.
Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the best footballers of his generation, but things have not gone according to plan for him recently. After having his contract with Manchester United mutually terminated, he was then dropped to the bench for Portugal's FIFA World Cup knockout matches.
Despite entering his late 30s, Ronaldo was positive that he could earn a transfer to a top club. However, the five-time Ballon d'Or winner struggled to find takers for himself among Europe's top teams.
Al-Nassr were seemingly the only club interested in acquiring the forward's services. While he denied claims that he agreed to move to the Saudi Arabian club earlier this month, it emerged last week that he has indeed joined them.
Ronaldo has put pen to paper on a two-and-a-half-year deal with the Middle East outfit. The Portuguese icon will also earn over £177 million per year during his stint with them (as reported by the BBC).
Dupraz has now claimed that the financial outlay that would be required to sign Ronaldo prevented major clubs from making a move for him. The former Saint-Etienne coach thinks the forward is still good enough to play in a top European league. He said on French radio station RMC:
"It is only money that has prevented major clubs from positioning themselves on Ronaldo who still has his place in a European championship."
After Al-Nassr announced Cristiano Ronaldo's signing, it emerged that they were not the only club interested in acquiring his services. Major League Soccer (MLS) side Kansas City reportedly held concrete talks over a deal for the forward.
What has Cristiano Ronaldo said about his move to Al-Nassr?
Explaining his decision to join Al-Nassr, Cristiano Ronaldo claimed that he has been impressed by Saudi Arabia's football ambitions. He also insisted that he felt this was the right time to move to the Middle East, having enjoyed a significant amount of success in Europe. He said:
"The vision of what Al Nassr are doing and developing in Saudi Arabia both in terms of men’s and women’s football is very inspiring. We can see from Saudi Arabia’s recent performance at the World Cup that this is a country with big football ambitions and a lot of potential."
"I am fortunate that I have won everything I set out to win in European football and feel now that this is the right moment."
It now remains to be seen when Ronaldo will make his debut for Al-Nassr.