The Impact Of Cristiano Ronaldo Arrival In Saudi Arabia?

Rudi Garcia compared the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo in Saudi Arabia with the arrival of Pele in the US at the end of his career.

“Ten years ago, it was unimaginable that great players would come to this country. It’s a bit like Pele’s stay in the US, especially in terms of developing football and enriching the culture in Saudi Arabia,” shared the ex-Al-Nasr coach.

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Ronaldo Praises The Potential Of The Saudi League

Saudi Arabia is not a typical destination for great players (until recently). Ronaldo did not care about this fact: “This is not the end of my career. I don’t worry about what others say. I’ve seen a lot of games and I know that the competition here will be serious.”

Six months later and almost 1500 minutes played, his worldview has not changed dramatically. Cristiano praised the league’s potential. “I want to stay here.

The league should continue to grow for the next five seasons. In the future, this league may enter the top 5 best championships, ”the Portuguese indicated in early June.

Then it seemed that this was a common phrase about a new championship. But now, against the backdrop of purchases, we see that the Saudis are ready to do a lot to raise the level as much as possible.

The Portuguese did not bypass the shortcomings. He especially noted the refereeing and the use of the VAR system: “There are many strong teams and good players here, but this is not enough. The judging and VAR system needs to be improved. All decisions can be made a little faster.”

He had to get used not only to the game aspects. In Saudi Arabia, Cristiano faced a completely different training format.


“In Europe, we train more in the morning, but here in the afternoon or at night. When Ramadan comes – at ten in the evening. It is very strange, but such situations become part of the new experience. I have never seen anything like this before,” said the Al-Nasr forward.

Ronaldo Has Not Yet Reached Full Capacity

Ronaldo’s stats in numbers can be described as promising, as long as Cristiano doesn’t look up to par with the new league. He shoots a lot as usual (only lost to Talisca), and in terms of xG and goals, he is up there among the best in the league.

Cristiano in Saudi Arabia received special treatment (expected due to his status). He played as a forward with a free role.

Before his dismissal, Rudi Garcia used the 4-2-3-1 scheme more often (Ronaldo’s partner in attack moved in a variety of ways and rather resembled a ten).

New coach Dinko Jelicic occasionally returned to this idea but mostly tried 4-3-3. Now Ronaldo moved more freely, before there was a situation when he intersected with the top ten and filled the same zone with it.

Actually, against the backdrop of discontent after the replacement and rumors about the influence of the Portuguese on the dismissal of Garcia.

Cristiano’s main weapon is jerks behind his back. This applies not only to counterattacks. He was constantly at the level of the defensive line and was waiting for a pass on the move.

Ronaldo subtly feels the moment when you need to start moving, and correctly positions himself at an acceptable distance from his opponents.

Defenders’ mistakes make it even more effective to use this method. Cristiano takes advantage of every extra second after a loss of concentration or a belated decision.


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