Cristiano Ronaldo scored a fine goal to complete a 3-2 comeback win for Al-Nassr this week that keeps the club’s Saudi Pro League title ambitions alive.
Al-Nassr were initially 2-0 down against Al-Shabab, at risk of falling too far behind league leaders Al-Ittihad to have a genuine chance to claim the title in the final two games of the season.
Ronaldo’s team pulled two goals back through Anderson Talisca and domestic star Abdulrhman Ghareeb, giving themselves almost the whole second half to find a potential winner.
The 38-year-old had already scored 13 times in 14 Saudi Pro League games prior to kick-off and got on the scoresheet again at the hour with a goal that eventually decided things.
Surging through the midde, Ronaldo shrugged off the attention to two defenders to unleash an unstoppable drive into the net from the edge of the penalty area.
The 3-2 win ensure that Al-Nassr sit three points behind Al-Ittihad with two games left.
Next up for Al-Nassr is an away clash with Ettifaq on Saturday, the team against whom Ronaldo made his debut in January following his high profile arrival in Saudi Arabia. The Portuguese didn’t scored that day, but the team won 1-0. After Ettifaq, the final game is against Al-Fateh, who Ronaldo got his first Al-Nassr goal against during a 2-2 draw in his second appearance.
Ronaldo left Manchester United under a cloud in November after falling down the pecking order at Old Trafford. He was determined that he could still play a leading role for a Champions League club, but ended up moving to Saudi Arabia after offers from Brazil and the United States didn’t tempt him.
The Saudi Pro League isn’t well known outside Saudi Arabia, but Ronaldo is insistent that the quality of the competition is getting better and could be one of the best in the world before long.
“The Saudi Arabia League is improving, and next year will be even better,” he told SSC Sports.
“Step by step, this league could be one of the top five worldwide. It needs time, infrastructure, players, but this country has incredible potential and incredible people! The League of Saudi Arabia will be great, I believe, it’s my opinion.”