Ronaldo mocked with Messi chants after woeful start for Al-Nassr

Ronaldo mocked with Messi chants after woeful start for Al-Nassr
Ronaldo, Messi roll back the years in nine-goal thriller

Cristiano Ronaldo’s first two games for Al-Nassr haven’t exactly gone to plan for him.

In fact, they’ve gone so badly that opposition fans have begun taunting him by chanting the name of great rival Lionel Messi at him.

The 37-year-old has failed to score in both of his first two games for the Saudi side, registering just one shot on target in that time.

After the disappointing first match over the weekend, he was jeered in the stands during Al-Nassr's Saudi Super Cup semi-final defeat to Al-Ittihad midweek.

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Al-Ittihad fans were filmed chanting “Messi, Messi, Messi” in clips posted to social media.

Ronaldo has one shot on target in two gamesGetty Images

Hardly the start Ronaldo will have been hoping for.

Ronaldo was a free agent after he was released from his Old Trafford contract in November and has signed a two-and-a-half year deal reportedly worth $75m per season.

While he hasn’t scored in either competitive game so far, Ronaldo did get himself on the team sheet in a recent friendly which saw him come up against Messi for what could be the final time.

Messi's PSG played Saudi All-Star XI, which was captained by Ronaldo, and beat them 5-4.

The exhibition match in Saudi Arabia was evidence of the country’s sportswashing strategy still being at “full throttle”, according to human rights group Amnesty International's UK economic affairs director Peter Frankental.

Amnesty has long criticised what it sees as Saudi Arabia’s attempts to gain legitimacy through sport in a bid to turn the focus away from the country’s “appalling” human rights record, and it sees this match as further evidence of that approach.

“Ronaldo’s big-money transfer to Al Nassr and Messi’s engagement by the Saudi authorities as a tourism ambassador are both part of Riyadh’s aggressive sportswashing programme, with the authorities seeking to exploit the celebrity appeal of elite sport to deflect attention from the country’s appalling human rights record.

It has also been reported that a Saudi businessman has paid around £2 million for an ‘Ultimate Pass’ for the match which allows him to meet the two global stars.

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