Vincent Aboubakar has revealed the reason he left Al-Nassr, confirming that Cristiano Ronaldo wanted him to stay despite claims that the arrival of the Portuguese legend forced him out.
Following weeks of speculation, Al-Nassr agreed to sign Cristiano Ronaldo on a free transfer in December 2022.
They notably offered the forward a £173 million per year contract, making him the most expensive player in football history.
However, with Ronaldo’s arrival, Al-Aalami was forced to offload one of their foreign players. In the first week of January, it emerged that the Riyadh-based club had fired Aboubakar in order to register their new signing.
Vincent Aboubakar has since signed a two-and-a-half-year deal with Turkish giants Besiktas. While Manchester United were linked with a surprise move for him, he eventually returned to the club where he has previously spent two seasons.
After settling in at Besiktas, Aboubakar has now opened up about his departure from Al-Nassr last month. He dismissed claims that he was forced out of the club as a result of Ronaldo’s arrival.
The Cameroonian international revealed that the five-time Ballon d’Or winner had actually asked him to remain in his position. Contrary to claims he left the Saudi Pro League club of his own free will.
Why Vincent Aboubakar Left Al-Nassr
“When Cristiano Ronaldo arrived, there was need for one player to leave. The coach called me and told me you see the situation; one foreign player had to leave between two others and I, and I told the coach ‘honestly, even before you came, I had the intention of leaving already’. I told him i needed to leave. I told him it was best I go. Other clubs presented offers but I opted for Besiktas. Leaving became complicated. The club did not want me to leave. They wanted me to stay and wanted to pay my salary till the end of the season. I said ‘President, honestly, I prefer leaving.’ Finally it was complicated but they let me go…When Cristiano came, we discussed for a while and he said he wished that I stay but I told him I wanted to leave. He asked me where my family is, and I said my family is in France and I prefer going to Turkey so that when I have time I can go see my kids. He said he understands that if my family is distant it becomes complicated. I was happy. I wanted to, and I had the desire to leave” — Aboubakar said on the French television channel Canal+[quoted by sportskeeda]
During his time at Al-Nassr, Aboubakar scored 13 goals and provided six assists before joining Besktas on a mutual termination contract.
Aboubakar has made four Super Lig appearances for Besiktas since his return to Turkey, but is yet to score.