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Al Hilal ‘willing to make Cristiano Ronaldo world’s highest-paid player’

Al Hilal ‘willing to make Cristiano Ronaldo world’s highest-paid player’

Saudi Arabian giants Al-Hilal are reportedly willing to offer Cristiano Ronaldo a gargantuan financial package that would make him the world’s highest-paid player.

The five-time Ballon d’Or winner is on the lookout for a new club after leaving Manchester United by mutual consent earlier this month.

Ronaldo took aim at various elements of the club during an explosive interview with Piers Morgan, criticizing the Glazer family and Erik ten Hag among others.

The 37-year-old’s interview unsurprisingly spelled the end of his time at Old Trafford, and he has officially become a free agent ahead of the second half of the season.

Ronaldo is currently focused on Portugal’s World Cup exploits in Qatar, but his search for a new stomping ground will kick into gear after the tournament.

Cristiano Ronaldo scores a penalty for Portugal against Ghana at the World Cup on November 24, 2022© Reuters

Ronaldo confirmed that he rejected a lucrative bid from Saudi Arabia over the summer, but Al-Hilal are reportedly ready to try again for the free agent following his exit from Man United.

According to The Mirror, the Saudi club have told Ronaldo to name his financial demands, and he can expect a rise on the weekly £500,000 he pocketed at Old Trafford.

The report adds that the former Real Madrid and Juventus man is open to a move to the Middle East at this stage in his career, and Al-Hilal are currently leading the race for his signature.

The country’s sports minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al Faisal recently talked up the chances of Ronaldo moving to the Middle East, telling BBC Sport: “Anything is possible, I would love to see Ronaldo play in the Saudi league.

“It would benefit the league, the sports eco-system in Saudi and it will inspire the youth for the future. He’s a role model to a lot of kids and has a big fanbase in Saudi.”

Cristiano Ronaldo pictured during Portugal training on November 19, 2022© Reuters

Should Ronaldo want to continue playing in Europe amid his reported desire to win one more Champions League, Chelsea and Sporting Lisbon are believed to be the two leading candidates.

Brazilian giants Flamengo are also alleged to be in the race to sign the veteran attacker, who only scored three goals in 16 games for Man United in the first half of the season.

Nevertheless, Ronaldo was chosen to lead the line in Portugal’s World Cup opener with Ghana on Thursday and opened the scoring from the penalty spot in that 3-2 win.

That strike saw Ronaldo become the first-ever men’s player to score in five World Cups, having also netted at the 2006, 2010, 2014 and 2018 tournaments.

A Selecao will now aim to confirm their place in the last 16 of the competition when they face off against Uruguay in their second Group H match on Monday.

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