Castro hails "perfectionist" Ronaldo after successive RSL hat-tricks

Al Nassr manager Luis Castro hailed Cristiano Ronaldo as a “perfectionist" who "takes professional to a different level” after the Portuguese star netted two Roshn Saudi League hat-tricks in three days.

The Al Nassr captain struck a second successive treble on Tuesday night in his side’s comprehensive 8-0 victory at Abha. The hat-trick, the 65th of the forward’s remarkable senior career, kept Ronaldo way out in front in this season’s RSL goalscoring charts.

He has now notched 29 goals in 24 league appearances this campaign, as Al Nassr sit second in the standings with nine rounds remaining. Ronaldo grabbed a hat-trick also in Matchweek 24, in the 5-1 triumph against Al Tai.

Speaking after the resounding win at Abha, Castro said: “Ronaldo is a perfectionist. He is a top player and takes professionalism to a different level.

“He is 39 years old, and I am sure fans and everyone else know just how dedicated he is. When he practises free-kicks, finishing or even when recovering, he always puts the maximum effort in. No matter what he does, it is always to his full capacity.”

Against Abha, Ronaldo fired home two free-kicks in the space of 10 minutes to give Al Nassr an early two-goal lead. He then completed his hat-trick with the most impudent of chips, before assisting Abdulmajeed Al Sulaiheem to send Al Nassr into half-time 5-0 ahead.

Ronaldo, who has 36 goals in 35 matches for Al Nassr in all competitions this season, sits joint top of the assist charts, alongside an all-star cast of Al Hilal’s Ruben Neves and Al Ahli’s Riyad Mahrez.

“[Cristiano] is a role model to every player,” Castro said. “He is always consistent, whether the team is going through difficult times or good times. He shows character regardless of the circumstances. It’s amazing.

“However, I don’t want to forget the other players; Ronaldo is part of the team and what he does is somehow a reflection of the collective effort of the whole group.”

Al Nassr remain 12 points behind leaders Al Hilal,  who also won in Matchweek 26, defeating Al Okhdood 3-0.