Paris Saint-Germain beat Riyadh All-Star 5-4 in most awaited friendly featuring Messi, Ronaldo

Paris Saint-Germain beat Riyadh All-Star 5-4 in most awaited friendly featuring Messi, Ronaldo post thumbnail image

PSG forward Lionel Messi draws 1st blood, Cristiano Ronaldo scores double for Riyadh All-Star to be man of match.

Football greats Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo met in a most awaited Riyadh friendly on Thursday as Messi-led Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) beat Riyadh All-Star, including Ronaldo, 5-4 at King Fahd Stadium.

Ronaldo was the captain of the home team, which had players from two Saudi clubs Al-Nassr and Al-Hilal.

The 37-year-old, who played for Manchester United, Juventus, and Real Madrid, joined Al-Nassr on Jan. 1, while his opponent Messi played for Barcelona for more than a decade before his move to PSG in 2021.

Fans flocked to the stadium to see perhaps the final duel between Messi and Ronaldo. Both stars met many times while they played in Spain.

PSG forward Messi scored the opener for his team in the third minute in one-on-one.

In the 33rd minute, Riyadh All-Star were awarded a penalty after Ronaldo was fouled by goalkeeper Keylor Navas, when he jumped for a header. Ronaldo scored from the white spot in the 34th minute.

PSG defender Juan Bernat was sent off for a professional foul on Salem Al Dawsari.

Ten-man PSG took the lead again. In minute 43, Brazilian defender Marquinhos finished in close range after Kylian Mbappe’s cross from the left flank.

PSG’s Brazilian forward Neymar missed a penalty kick in the injury time of the first half.

In the 51st minute, Ronaldo made a header that hit the post. But he followed the ball to continue the action, and had a left-footed effort on goal to beat Navas.

Ronaldo scored twice as the first half ended 2-2.

In the 53rd minute of the second half, PSG’s Spanish defender Sergio Ramos finished in the six-yard box after Mbappe’s solo run, 3-2.

In a few minutes, Riyadh All-Star’s South Korean defender Jang Hyun-Soo scored in the near post after a corner kick, 3-3.

PSG were awarded another penalty after a handball. Mbappe converted it successfully to make it 4-3 for the French club.

Ronaldo left the pitch in the 61st minute. In addition to the Portuguese star, Messi was subbed out.

PSG forward Hugo Ekitike scored on a quick counter-attack in the 78th minute, 5-3.

However, Riyadh All-Star’s Brazilian attacking midfielder Anderson Talisca scored a 23-meter screamer in the 94th minute.

PSG won the match 5-4.

Ronaldo was named the man of the match for scoring two goals.

Before the kick-off, Sergio Ramos (PSG) and Cristiano Ronaldo (Riyadh All-Star) met in the tunnel to greet. Both had played for Real Madrid for a long time.

Source: AA

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