Saudi Arabia says it wants its investors to take over Manchester United and Liverpool – and hopes Cristiano Ronaldo comes to play in its domestic league.

Sports Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al-Faisal has revealed the country’s latest sporting ambitions in an interview with Sky News – the sovereign wealth fund that already owns Newcastle and is now funding a series of breakaway golf.

This is United’s availability – after the Glazers announced plans for a potential sale – and Ronaldo who interests Prince Abdulaziz.

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He would like Ronaldo to sign for a Saudi Pro League after the world Cupwith the 37-year-old free agent following a tough start this week from United.

“Who wouldn’t want him to play in his league? Prince Abdulaziz told Sky News. “He’s a role model for a lot of young players – him and Messi.”

The vision would see the Saudi league with Ronaldo and Messi, who is still signed to Paris Saint-Germain but is already signed up to promote Saudi Arabia.

“It has benefited a lot in terms of tourism for the kingdom,” Prince Abdulaziz said. “If they can, I would like to see them both play in the Saudi league.”

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Newcastle was taken over by the Saudis last year through the Public Investment Fund, which the Premier League says is not controlled by the government despite being headed by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal during the warm-up before the match
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Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal

Now two more Premier League clubs are on the market – Liverpool and United – and the sports minister wants one or the other – or both – to be owned by Saudi Arabia.

“I hope so, if there are investors and the numbers add up, and it makes a good deal,” he said. “Then the private sector could come, or companies could come from the kingdom.”

He added: “The Premier League is the best league in the world. Everyone watches the Premier League. It’s the most watched league and there are die-hard fans of these teams in the kingdom. So that would be an advantage. for everyone.”

Saudi fans cheer during the World Cup match against Argentina.  Photo: Yukihito Taguchi-USA TODAY Sports/Reuters
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Saudi fans cheer during a World Cup match against Argentina. Photo: Yukihito Taguchi-USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

“I can say we have a strong league. It’s not one of the strongest in Asia. You know, we’re building towards a better future. And we’re seeing how the future holds up against that.”

He continued: “And you know, I heard about this speculation in the news, like everyone else. I don’t have any details on any of the reports that have come out. But you know, what I can say , is that we have Messi as an ambassador for tourism in the kingdom with the Ministry of Tourism – and that has benefited a lot.”

Read more:
Ronaldo breaks silence on explosive interview
Saudi Arabia stun Argentina in one of biggest World Cup upsets ever
How ‘scavenger’ Glazers bought the club and left Old Trafford in a ‘mess’

He continued: “In terms of tourism for the kingdom, if they can, I would like to see them both play in the Saudi League, and, you know, if the best players come into the Saudi League and play, this will strengthen the programs we carry out.

“It will show that, you know, the league is stronger to show that there is potential for young people to look up to for the future.”

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