This Sunday, Cristiano Ronaldo added his first official minutes in Al Nassr, who beat Al Ittifaq 1-0 with a goal from Anderson Talisca, in a match valid for date 14 of the Pro League of Saudi Arabia football.
The former striker for Manchester United, Real Madrid and Juventus, among other clubs, made his debut in the Riyadh squad, which he joined after the Qatar 2022 World Cup, with a contract until mid-2025 and salaries of more than 200 million euros per season.
Cristiano Ronaldo, who will turn 38 on February 5, played the entire game for the team led by French coach Rudi García.
Another of those who was on the field was Pity Gonzalo Martínez (former Huracán and River Plate), who was substituted after 22 minutes of the second stage, according to the Flashscore site.
The only goal of the day was scored by Anderson Talisca for the victory of Al Nassr.
31 minutes into the first half, a cross came from the right, CR7 rose and the ball passed him, but the Brazilian appeared from behind, who had been one of the stars in the game against PSG, and scored the goal that led the leader of the Arab tournament at 33 units.
On Thursday, against the team of Messi, Neymar and Mbappé, Cristiano Ronaldo showed that he is still in force.
And this Sunday he did the same, playing the game from start to finish.
77 minutes were running when CR7 took the ball in the area, faked to kick and hooked inside, literally leaving his marker lying and triggered against the post causing the goalkeeper's reaction that prevented the second goal of the game.
Ronaldo's move on a tile caused a real ovation inside the stadium.
Ronaldomania invaded Riyadh
The fans entered the stadium, with a capacity for some 25,000 people, in the midst of a great uproar, chanting the name of CR7, their new idol.
"We wanted to witness this historic moment in the stadium," Fares told EFE at the gates of Mrsool Park, an Al Nassr fan who expected Cristiano to "score his first hat-trick in the Saudi league."
The CR7 shirts everywhere. Photo.
Abdelrahman, another fan dressed in the Portuguese shirt, was convinced that his team's aspirations, with CR7, "are not limited to the local league", but that they hope to win the Asian Champions League and play in the Club World Cup.
A large number of street vendors have also set up in the vicinity of the stadium, selling all kinds of products, such as shirts, handkerchiefs or scarves, with Cristiano's name and number.
Ronaldomania invaded Arabia. Photo: REUTERS/Ahmed Yosri
"The market has revived a lot after the incorporation of Ronaldo. There is a remarkable demand for all the products, especially Ronaldo's shirt," said Moaz, one of the vendors at Mrsool Park.
Moaz buys the official Al Nassr jerseys and prints and stamps the CR7 name and number himself.
He then sells them for 300 Saudi riyals (about 73 euros), compared to the 101 euros it costs to buy it in the official store.
And it is that
at the beginning of the month Al Nassr announced that Cristiano's shirt was sold out
, since more than 5,000 shirts were sold in less than 24 hours.
The club made 2 million Saudi riyals (almost half a million euros) just from the sale of the five-time Ballon d'Or winner's shirts.
While the fans already take it for granted that their team will stay with the league, the novelty is that in the coming days the one who will join Al Nassr is none other than Agustín Rossi, after his controversial departure from Boca.
Finally, the Argentine club will receive about 1.5 million dollars.
In the other game of the day, Ramón Díaz's Al Hilal, where former Racing player Luciano Vietto also plays, beat Abha 2-1.
With information from Télam, EFE and AFP