Cristiano Ronaldo has been told to “shut up”, with the Portuguese accused of allowing Lionel Messi to influence his thoughts on the Saudi Pro League.

Ronaldo Told To 'Shut Up' After 'Messi-Influenced' Saudi Claim

Back in January, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner said when comparing his new home in the Middle East with a league previously occupied by eternal rival Messi in France:


“The Saudi league is not worse than Ligue 1.

“The Saudi Pro League is more competitive than Ligue 1, I can say that after one year spent there.

“We are better than the French league already now.”

Ronaldo’s comments drew an inevitably passionate response from those with ties to French football, and 1998 World Cup winner Frank Leboeuf is the latest to have fired back at CR7.


It’s Unfair

The former Chelsea and Marseille defender, who spent time in Qatar towards the end of his playing career, has told BetVictor: that “it annoys me when I hear Cristiano Ronaldo saying that the Saudi Pro League is better than Ligue 1.

“Why do you think he chose to make that comment about Ligue 1 rather than the Portuguese League?

“It’s because Lionel Messi played in Ligue 1.

“I have lots of respect for him as a player but come on, just shut up! It is unfair to Ligue 1.


“For me, Portugal are actually one of the contenders for this summer’s European Championships.

“I actually think they can win the Euros, but only if Cristiano Ronaldo doesn’t play.


“You cannot take away anything that Ronaldo has done for football just because he has gone to retire in the Saudi League.

“I want to thank him for taking the sport to another level, but there is an end for everyone.

“He has every right to play in Saudi Arabia, although I’m not sure he needed even more money!”


Ronaldo moved to Al-Nassr after being released by Manchester United as a free agent.

He is working on the most lucrative contract in world football, with Leboeuf adding on the 39-year-old’s career path and that of current Inter Miami superstar Messi:

“I have no problem with players coming to the end of their careers going to play in lesser leagues to earn more money, the same has happened with Lionel Messi.

“Both of them were fantastic players but they have chosen not to play at the top level anymore and we have to respect that.

“You can never take away what they have done for football.

“The competition between those two actually made the entire sport better.

“It made it more attractive. Thank you Ronaldo, thank you Messi, enjoy your retirement!”

Read more: Ronaldo Sends Message Amid Saudi Ban

However, Ronaldo and Messi continue to deliver for their respective clubs and international teams.

CR7 has netted 34 goals in the 2023-24 campaign, as he prepares to lead Portugal into Euro 2024, while Argentine icon Messi now has eight Golden Balls and three FIFA Best awards to his name – with the goals starting to flow for him again in MLS.

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