Returning Ronaldo Disappoints As Al Nassr Blow Chances Of Saudi League Title

Al Nassr captain Cristiano Ronaldo | Credit: Getty

Returning Ronaldo Disappoints As Al Nassr Blow Chances Of Saudi League Title

Ayoola Kelechi 12:33 - 08.03.2024

The Portuguese superstar's return was marked with disappointment as Al Nassr's chances of winning the league went up in smoke

Cristiano Ronaldo's highly anticipated return to the Saudi Pro League culminated in disappointment as Al-Nassr suffered a humbling 3-1 defeat on home turf against Al Raed.

The 39-year-old, who was absent during Al-Nassr's thrilling eight-goal showdown with Al Hazem the previous week due to suspension, was unable to reverse the tide for the struggling Knights of Najd, who continued their dismal run of form.

Al Nassr’s Disappointing Performance

Fresh off their first defeat in the AFC Champions League against Al Ain, Ronaldo and his teammates faced Al Raed with optimism. However, their confidence quickly evaporated as Karim El Berkaoui capitalized on defensive lapses from Al-Nassr to break the deadlock after just 18 minutes.

Although Ayman Yahya restored parity for Luis Castro's side, the Riyadh-based giants suffered another lapse early in the second half when Mohammed Fouzair took advantage of a defensive slip-up to put Al Raed back in the lead.

Al-Nassr's Title Hopes Dashed

Despite making several changes in response, the 2023 Arab Cup winners failed to alter the course of the game, with Cristiano's free-kick rattling the crossbar as their best chance at equalizing. To compound their woes, Amir Sayoud sealed the victory for the visitors with a late goal.

The defeat leaves Al-Nassr trailing league leaders Al-Hilal by a significant nine-point margin, with the latter poised to clinch their 19th league title, barring a dramatic turn of events.

The disappointment was evident on Cristiano Ronaldo's face as he observed Al-Nassr's surprising 3-1 loss to underdog Al Raed in the Saudi Pro League on Thursday evening. While Al Raed celebrated their remarkable victory, Ronaldo, a five-time Ballon d'Or winner, seemed visibly troubled.

Despite his efforts to inspire his teammates, their performance fell short, leaving him disheartened as they experienced their first home defeat of the season. With Al-Nassr's chances of clinching the Saudi League title fading, Ronaldo and his teammates face an uphill battle to salvage their campaign and restore their winning form.

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