Cristiano Ronaldo FINALLY makes his Al Nassr debut after serving a two-match ban from his Man United days following £175m-a-year move, with Anderson Talisca scoring the only goal in victory over Ettifaq
- Cristiano Ronaldo made his delayed Al-Nassr debut in a 1-0 win over Ettifaq
- Ronaldo joined Al-Nassr last month on a reported £175million-a-year contract
- Brazilian Anderson Talisca scored the only goal in the Saudi Pro League match
Cristiano Ronaldo’s competitive debut for Al-Nassr ended in victory but no goals for the Portuguese as his new side beat Ettifaq 1-0 in the Saudi Pro League.
The 37-year-old joined Al-Nassr last month on a reported £175million-a-year contract until 2025.
That came after the former Juventus and Real Madrid forward’s existing deal with Manchester United was cancelled in the aftermath of a high-profile interview in which he was critical of the club and officials.
Cristiano Ronaldo made his long-awaited Al Nassr debut in a 1-0 win over Al Ettifaq in Riyadh
Ronaldo’s team-mate Anderson Talisca scored the only goal of the Saudi Pro League match
Ronaldo, who on Thursday scored twice for a Riyadh All Stars team in a 5-4 defeat to Lionel Messi’s Paris St Germain in an exhibition match in the Saudi capital, played the full 90 minutes for the league leaders against Ettifaq on Sunday but did not make a telling contribution.
Brazilian Anderson Talisca, a former Benfica forward, scored the only goal of the game on the half-hour.
The win keeps Al-Nassr a point clear of Al Hilal at the top of the table having played 14 games, one less than their nearest challengers.
Ronaldo took to the starting line-up for Al-Nassr for the first time after his stunning move
The 37-year-old forward failed to get on the scoresheet in his first match for his new club
Ronaldo had been forced to wait for his debut due to receiving a two-game FA suspension after smashing an Everton fan’s phone last year.
As a consequence, Ronaldo missed Al-Nassr’s 2-0 win against Al-Tai and their 0-0 draw with Al-Shabab.
Al-Nassr were also forced to make room in their squad to register the Portuguese superstar.
Vincent Aboubakar’s saw his contract terminated by the Saudi Arabian club to make way for Ronaldo, with the Cameroon forward having since joined Turkish side Besiktas.
The decision came due to the Saudi League rules stating that clubs can only register up to eight foreign players per squad.
Ronaldo had been made to wait for his debut due to serving a two-match FA suspension
Ronaldo has been warmly welcomed by football fans since his arrival in Saudi Arabia
Ronaldo had joined Al-Nassr following a difficult couple of months, including the forward’s controversial exit from Manchester United.
The 37-year-old had given a bombshell interview to Piers Morgan, which saw him take aim at various aspects of the club.
Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag and the owners, the Glazers, were among those to be criticised by Ronaldo, leading to his departure.
Ronaldo was later dropped to the bench for Portugal’s two knockout ties at the World Cup in Qatar.
The forward was reported to have fallen out with then-national team boss Fernando Santos.