March 27, 2023

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Now I play in the same team with Ronaldo. And I can tell you something

‘Not strong enough’: Louis van Gaal’s verdict on the 12-year-old who became a Barça legend

‘Not strong enough’: Louis van Gaal’s verdict on the 12-year-old who became a Barça legend

In December, Jaloliddin Masharipov followed Cristiano Ronaldo at the World Cup, then monitored the news about his move to Saudi Arabia, and now he is recording joint videos with him and earning penalties for him – they have been partners in Al-Nasr for more than a month.

Ronaldo plays under his favorite seven – in January, Masharipov voluntarily gave the Portuguese his number, and now every morning he meets the superstar in training and exchanges a few words, like you and your office colleagues.

How did Cristiano change the life of the team? Does the coach bend under him? Do partners take care of the superstar in training?

Word to Jaloliddin.


Hello! My name is Jaloliddin Masharipov, I play with Cristiano Ronaldo.

In 2021, I moved to Al-Nasr from the Uzbek Pakhtakor. I had offers from several clubs from Russia, the UAE and other countries, but I chose the championship based on its strong level.

Saudi Arabia as a country did not really surprise me, but I did not expect such a football atmosphere. Football is very popular here. I was impressed by how many fans go to the stadiums and how they support their teams. No wonder the Saudi Arabia team made a splash at the World Cup.

The local championship is of a very good level. Playing in Arab countries, especially in Saudi Arabia, is not easy. The arrival of strong players from Europe has raised the level of the league, but it is not easy for them here either. Not all legionnaires can play at their level here, because each team is cut throughout the match. So the transfer of Ronaldo is a well-deserved achievement of the entire football of the country.

Many are interested in what Cristiano is like in life: what he talks about, how he trains, where he lives. Well, I can tell you something.

Ronaldo made contact with the team from day one. There are no problems with the language, he easily communicates with everyone. With the locals – in English, because many speak it fluently. With legionnaires – in Spanish.

He is accompanied by an interpreter and bodyguards. He is a popular person, so he took sufficient precautions.

Cristiano stayed in one of the best hotels. Soon he will move into one of the luxury villas. This opportunity is also provided to other players. Someone prefers to live in a hotel, someone chooses one of the houses near the stadium. The club creates all the necessary conditions for the players.

His salary is of little concern to us. We have high-level players in our team, but Ronaldo is one of the brightest players in history. Naturally, he is paid big money, but he deserves it. All the rest are also quite good conditions.

Ronaldo in the early days spoke to us and said that we should be one family, and stressed several times that he came for trophies. He communicates with everyone on an equal footing, so respect for him is growing every day. He is a great role model.

I already knew that Ronaldo is a top-level player. To do this, it is not necessary to play with him on the same team. His awards and achievements speak for themselves. Cristiano has nothing more to prove in football. He proved everything even before he came to Al-Nasr.

At the same time, his status does not give any football privileges. I assumed that my partners would not play closely with Ronaldo in training, but that was not the case. Everyone tries to give all the best, but sometimes we protect him, like all our partners. You can’t go hard into a joint, rush into a tackle. Nobody asked us about it, we just protect him from injuries. This is fine. This is how we take care of any teammate.

Before the match against Al-Tai (the first game that Cristiano attended –, the atmosphere was normal, but we felt that in our dressing room one of the strongest players in the world. This is good for the team. Looking at him, everyone starts to treat the matter more professionally.

Ronaldo quickly became team captain. It was predictable. It would be strange if it were otherwise. Our ex-captain willingly gave him the bandage. I think this is the best solution. It couldn’t be otherwise.

Here you will probably want to ask about the seven that I gave to Cristiano. When Ronaldo first moved, there were rumors about my departure, false news came out. Before the arrival of Cristiano, I was often asked: “Will you give him number 7?” How not to give? It’s Cristiano Ronaldo! These players need to be respected!

When he took the seven, many assumed that I would leave Al-Nasr. But I just gave up my number. Leaving was out of the question. Both the club and the coach wanted to see me in the team. I have a valid contract. I changed my number just because Ronaldo came. This guy is one of the two best players in the world. No extra words are needed here.

In the same period, they wrote that Vincent Abubakar left because of Ronaldo, but this is also not true. If Vincent wanted to, he stayed. He left so as not to sit on the bench. I think he accepted it with dignity. When Cristiano arrived, Vincent felt that he would fade into the background. Therefore, he left Al-Nasr as soon as a good offer was received. There was no scandal.

In the media, in general, they often go too far. For example, Juninho said that Rudi Garcia will bring Ronaldo breakfast… I don’t think the coach will bend under Cristiano. Rudi Garcia has a great personality. Both he and Ronaldo are great professionals. The coach treats everyone the same. Any player can talk to him for hours.

With the arrival of Cristiano, the number of club subscribers in social networks has grown 15 times. When I posted a video with him, many people subscribed to me. Mostly from Uzbekistan. I am the first Uzbek to play with Ronaldo, so this is not surprising.