Cristiano Ronaldo’s first game in his new football home of Saudi Arabia is set to be against France’s Paris Saint-Germain, promising an interesting reunion with his career-long rival Lionel Messi hot off the heels of the World Cup in Qatar.
PSG said it will play a friendly in Riyadh on 19th January against a composite team of players from Ronaldo’s new club Al Nassr and Al Hilal, the current title holder of the Asian Champions League.
Qatar-owned PSG is visiting Saudi Arabia during a two-day trip to the region, including a visit to Doha for promotional work with the club’s portfolio of Qatari sponsors.
World soccer regulations require the 37-year-old star to finish serving a two-match suspension imposed by the English Football Association in November ahead of the World Cup meaning Ronaldo should have to wait until 22nd January to make his formal debut for Al-Nassr in a league game against Al Ettifaq.
Lionel Messi, captain of Argentina’s team and striker for PSG, is the current World Cup title holder following Argentina’s defeat of France in Qatar’s World Cup final penalty shoot-out last December. Fierce competition for the Portuguese striker for the Ballon D’Or, the two-match suspension may come as a saving grace for Ronaldo, after Morocco eliminated Portugal in what was meant to be his last World Cup game for his country. With Ronaldo having just joined Saudi’s Al Nassr team, the two soccer stars might not have expected to meet so soon and on Saudi soil.