Former Super Eagles striker Odion Ighalo says he feels no threat from his ex-Manchester United teammate Cristiano Ronaldo as they go head-to-head in the Saudi Pro League.
Ighalo, who plays for Saudi outfit Al-Hilal, has been one of the most prolific stars in the Pro League this season.
Ronaldo’s Al-Nassr will go head-to-head with Ighalo’s Al-Hilal. Al-Nassr is just a point ahead of their Riyadh rivals in the top flight.
The Nigerian has been in red-hot form since joining Al-Hilal rivals Al-Shabab at the start of the season, scoring 20 goals in 25 appearances.
But the 33-year-old could face competition for his goalscoring exploits from Real Madrid icon Ronaldo. Ighalo has played down feeling intimidated by the former Ballon d’Or winner.
Asked if it worried about Ronaldo’s arrival in Saudi Arabia, Ighalo said: “No, but Ronaldo is a legend. He is the best, for me, he is the greatest of all time.
“I have too much respect and admiration for him. But he is going to play for his team and he will score goals and me, I am going to play for my team and I will score goals.”
Ronaldo finally made his long-awaited debut for Al-Nassr in their 1-0 win over Ettifaq on Sunday. The veteran, who was immediately made club captain after joining, was unable to score in the game.
A registration issue and a one-match Premier League ban that carried over to the Saudi Pro League meant Ronaldo had to wait three weeks for his maiden appearance. But boss Rudi Garcia was impressed by his display in the victory, which was sealed by Anderson Talisca’s goal.
Ronaldo signed an eye-watering £176m two-year contract with Al-Nassr after failing to find a European club in the wake of his axing by United. The Saudi club is confident they can extend his deal if the Portugal captain decides to continue playing beyond the age of 40.