Ronaldo confidante shares ex-Man Utd striker’s real ‘desire’ despite £173m-a-year offer

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Piers Morgan claims Cristiano Ronaldo has told him that his “burning desire” is to carry on at the “highest level” despite reports he’s agreed a move to Al-Nassr.

Manchester United came to a mutual agreement with Ronaldo to terminate his contract last week after his controversial interview with Morgan.

The Portugal international criticised Man Utd, Erik ten Hag, former interim boss Ralf Rangnick, senior executives, youngsters and much more in a 90-minute chat.

Man Utd had already had issues with Ronaldo after the 37-year-old spent most of the summer transfer window attempting to engineer a move away from the club.

Ten Hag always maintained publicly that Ronaldo was a key member of his squad but his lack of Premier League starts came to a head in October.

Ronaldo refused to come off the bench against Tottenham, leading to him receiving a fine from the club and being made to train alone.

United came to the conclusion that there was no way back for him at Old Trafford following the interview with Morgan and the striker is now free to find a new club.

And Spanish publication Marca revealed earlier this week that Ronaldo is on the verge of a move to Saudi Arabia after Al-Nassr made him a £173m-a-year offer.

Another Saudi club Al Hilal are willing to do a deal for Ronaldo too despite his hopes that a big Champions League club could take a chance on him.

Despite no European club willing to match the terms on offer in the Middle East, Morgan claims that Ronaldo is hoping a good World Cup can catapult him into the thoughts of top clubs.

“He thinks that if he does well at this World Cup, he’ll get what he really wants, which is a club in the Champions League that extends his record and his legacy,” Morgan told the Daily Telegraph.

“It’s not about money at this stage of his career.

“It comes down to a burning desire to play football at the highest level, to break records and win trophies. And he has done that in more countries than any other player in history.”

Ronaldo has already caused a little controversy at the World Cup with former Premier League striker Chris Sutton calling Ronaldo a “terrible example to young kids” after the Portugal international won a penalty against Ghana when he was brought down by Mohammed Salisu.

Sutton thought Ronaldo went down far too easily, he told the Daily Mail: “Look it is not the first time is it. I have to say the VAR officials are absolute bottle jobs. It isn’t good play by Ronaldo. It is a terrible example to young kids everwhere around the world. Everyone will be tumbling over.

“He is a great player. But it was cheating. I thought the officials had to be stronger. It was embarrassing really how they missed it. I was at the Brazil game and I saw the footage. Blimey – you don’t have to watch it many times to see that he went over.

“Totally manufactured. Out of order. The VAR officials shouldn’t miss that. I was reading comments saying it was a penalty. It is ridiculous and cheating.

“I know he has his fans within the media and around the world but come on. That was awful.”

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