Ronaldo faces one-game ban for indiscretion in Saudi League victory


29th February 2024 – (Riyadh) Cristiano Ronaldo, the renowned Portuguese footballer, will miss his next match with Al Nassr after being handed a one-match suspension by the Saudi Football Federation’s Disciplinary and Ethics Committee. The decision, announced on Wednesday, February 28, follows an incident where Ronaldo was seen making what appeared to be an offensive gesture after his team’s narrow 3-2 victory over Al Shabab.

The contentious moment occurred at the conclusion of Sunday’s match. Videos circulated on social media showed Ronaldo gesturing provocatively with his hand in front of his body while holding his ear, an act seemingly aimed at the opposing team’s supporters. During the incident, the crowd’s chants of “Messi”—a nod to Ronaldo’s storied Argentine rival—were audible.

Ronaldo, in addition to the suspension, has been fined 10,000 Saudi riyals (equivalent to US$2,666) by the SAFF. Moreover, he is obliged to pay Al Shabab a sum of 20,000 riyals to cover the administrative expenses associated with their complaint.

The committee’s ruling is definitive, with no option for appeal.

This is not the first time Ronaldo has been scrutinized for his conduct in the Saudi league. In April of the previous year, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner was involved in another incident where he seemed to make an inappropriate gesture towards his groin area after a game against Al Hilal, which ended in a 2-0 defeat for Al Nassr.