Many superstars have left for Saudi Arabian teams this summer to take advantage of the country’s rich salary caps and television deals.

After Manchester United terminated Cristiano Ronaldo’s contract, he departed Europe for the Middle East. There, he signed a massive contract with Al-Nassr. In 19 games, the Portuguese scored 14 times but still couldn’t lead his team to the Saudi championship.

His arrival paved the way for several more A-list athletes to join the Saudi Pro League for the next season. For example, Karim Benzema, Roberto Firmino, N’Golo Kante, Riyad Mahrez and many more are joining the league.

The man who started it all has even predicted current trends to continue. In Ronaldo’s eyes, the Saudi Pro League will be among the top five in the globe over the next few years.

Ighalo admits Ronaldo and other stars seek Saudi move for money

Ronaldo has said in many interviews that he wants to see the Saudi league become as prestigious as the top leagues in Europe. But now a former prominent player in the Saudi league has voiced another perspective.

Odion Ighalo, who spent two fruitful years with Al Shabab and Al-Hilal, has said that money was a major factor in his decision to play in the Middle East.

“When you are young, yes, you play for passion. Back then, you don’t care about money. But at my age, I am in the final stretch of my career. I don’t know if it will be one or two years or when God will tell it to stop,” he told OmaSportsTV.

Ighalo lashes out at ‘hypocritical’ Cristiano Ronaldo in Saudi league

The veteran striker went on to say that Ronaldo and the other big players who have tried out the Saudi league are just interested in the money.

“I know it won’t be more than three years. I’ve played for passion all my life. Now it’s for money. I’m not one of those players who come and say: ‘I play for passion’. Brother, it’s money. At the end of the day, it’s money.

“Is Ronaldo still playing out of passion? Ronaldo has earned 100 times more than I have in my entire life, yet he went to Saudi Arabia. Did he do that out of passion? It’s for money, bro.”