Cristiano Ronaldo fined, suspended for one match by SAFF; here’s why

The Disciplinary and Ethics Committee of the Saudi Arabian Football Federation (SAFF) on Wednesday, February 28, suspended Cristiano Ronaldo for one match and fined him 30,000 Saudi Riyals (Rs 6,63,396) after allegedly making an obscene gesture towards fans on the pitch.

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The incident occurred on Sunday, February 25, following Al Nassr’s 3-2 win over Al Shabab in the 21st round of the Roshen Professional League.

A video shared on social media platforms showed Ronaldo cupping his left ear and pumping his right hand multiple times in front of his crotch.

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The background echoed with chants of “Messi, Messi,” referring to Ronaldo’s long-time football rival from Argentina.

Watch the video here

Ronaldo allegedly violated Article 57-1 of the Disciplinary and Ethics Regulations.

The Article states— “Any person who causes public excitement by action, word, or gesture during any match shall be suspended for one match, and shall be punished with a fine of 10,000 Saudi riyals.”

39-year-old will have to pay a fine of 10,000 Saudi Riyals (Rs 2,21,137) to the Saudi Football Federation and also 20,000 Saudi Riyals (Rs 4,42,271) to Al Shabab to cover the costs of the complaint filing fees.

As per a report by Arabic daily Al-Riyadiya, Ronaldo said in a statement, “I respect all clubs. And the joy after the shot expresses strength and victory, and it is not shameful. We are used to it in Europe.”

This is not the first time Ronaldo has faced criticism for his celebrations. In April 2023, Ronaldo grabbed his crotch in a Saudi Pro League match against Al Hilal.

Ronaldo, who joined Nassr in December 2022, currently leads the Saudi Pro League (SPL) scoring charts with 22 goals in 20 matches.


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