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Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi set to clash in January




If the plans go on as scheduled, Paris Saint-Germain could  make a trip to Saudi Arabia for a friendly match that will reignite a Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi battle.

Just on Friday, Ronaldo’s move to Ahmed Musa’s former club, Al-Nassr on a two-and-a-half year deal was announced with Ronaldo set to earn around £373million-a-year.

It is a mouthwatering amount as Ronaldo ventures out of Europe for the first time in his 21-year career since starting out at Sporting Lisbon, before going onto play for Manchester United, Real madrid, Juventus  and then a second spell at the Red Devils.

During his time at Los Blancos, however, Ronaldo was in constant battle with Lionel Messi  as the pair pushed each other all the way for individual and team honours with the latter at Barcelona Ronaldo scored 450 goals in 438 matches for Real, winning the Champions League  on four occasions, while Messi reached similar heights at Barca where he won countless major trophies, netting over 500 times.

The duo have played against each other on 34 occasions in their careers, and Ronaldo and Messi could be set for one last reunion next month. According to Moroccan journalist Achraf Ben Ayad, via the Daily Star, PSG will play against a combined XI from Al-Nassr and Al-Hilal on January 19.


The news was greeted with excitement by fans, with one tweeting: “Wow! One last time.” A second wrote: “It’s like a Disney film this stuff.” And a third said: “I can’t wait for this!” Others were all left making the same joke as one posted: “Assuming Ronaldo makes the starting squad is bold.”

“Cristiano won’t make the XI,” commented one, while another echoed: “Ronaldo won’t get into the eleven.” Al-Nassr and Al-Hilal are arguably the two most well-known teams in the Saudi Pro League and they met on Boxing Day as it finished as as 2-2 draw.

Former Manchester United forward Odion Ighalo is amongst the Al-Hilal squad, with ex-Benfica man Anderson Talisca and Vincent Aboubakar in the ranks of Al-Nassr.

The two sides are set to put a team together and it is likely that Ronaldo will feature given his stature in the game.

Ronaldo’s proposed switch to Al-Nassr was announced on Friday in a statement on the club’s website. It read: “This is more than history in the making.


This is a signing that will not only inspire our club to achieve even greater success but inspire our league, our nation and future generations, boys and girls to be the best version of themselves. Welcome, Cristiano, to your new home.”

The five-time Ballon d’Or winner added: “Al Nassr’s vision is very inspiring and impressive. I look forward to a different league experience in a different country. I am excited to join my team-mates as soon as possible.”

Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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