Cristiano Ronaldo’s arrival at Saudi Arabian side Al Nassr has created much buzz about the club and brought global attention to the team and the Saudi Pro League.
Al Nassr sit first in the Saudi top-flight standings and they are gunning for a league title, hoping to qualify for next year’s AFC Champions League in the process. They were eliminated in the semis of the Saudi Super Cup, but they are still alive in the Round of 16 for the King Cup of Champions.
Now 37 years old, Ronaldo signed on with Al Nassr after the mutual cancellation of his Manchester United contract that left him free to sign with any club.
Ronaldo’s official debut with the club came on Sunday, January 22, and The Sporting News brings you a full look at what the season holds for the Portuguese superstar.
MORE: All the details on Cristiano Ronaldo’s contract at Al Nassr
Al Nassr next match
Having scored a brace in his first match for Al Nassr as part of a Riyadh All Stars XI against PSG, Ronaldo made his debut for Al Nassr with a 1-0 win over Ettifaq at home, putting in a good performance.
It went downhill from there, however, as Al Nassr were defeated by Al Ittihad 3-1 in the semifinal of the Saudi Super Cup in their most recent match, meaning they failed to reach the final of the competition. Ronaldo failed to score in that match. However, he did open his account for his new club in their next league fixture, scoring a stoppage-time penalty against Al Fateh to seal a 2-2 draw.
Next up for Al Nassr and Ronaldo is a visit to Al-Wehda on February 9.
- Al Nassr next match: at Al-Wehda (road match)
- Competition: Saudi Professional League (Matchday 16 of 30)
- Stadium: King Abdul Aziz Stadium (Mecca, Saudi Arabia)
- Date / Time: 8:30 p.m. local time
Global date, time for Al-Wehda vs Al Nassr
|USA||Thurs, Feb. 9||12:30 ET|
|Canada||Thurs, Feb. 9||12:30 ET|
|UK||Thurs, Feb. 9||17:30 GMT|
|Australia||Fri, Feb. 10||04:30 AEDT|
|India||Thurs, Feb. 9||23:00 IST|
|Hong Kong||Fri, Feb. 10||01:30 HKT|
|Malaysia||Fri, Feb. 10||01:30 MYT|
|Singapore||Fri, Feb. 10||01:30 SGT|
|New Zealand||Fri, Feb. 10||06:30 NZDT|
MORE: Who are Al Nassr? All about Ronaldo’s new club
Al Nassr match schedule 2023
Al Nassr are top of the Saudi Pro League, and will look to push forward to finish in that spot to secure the league title and qualify for the AFC Champions League. Cristiano Ronaldo made his Al Nassr debut on January 22 vs Ettifaq in league play after he served a two-game suspension, and helped earn a 1-0 win.
The club is also still alive in the King Cup of Champions, which is the domestic cup competition in Saudi Arabia. Should Al Nassr progress past the quarterfinals in March, they will contest the semifinals sometime in April, with a date not yet determined.
They were eliminated from the Saudi Super Cup, which is structured as a mini four-team tournament just like the Supercopa de Espana, which is also held in the Arab country. They were beaten 3-1 by Al Ittihad, who went on to lift the trophy.
MORE: Who owns Al Nassr? Who is paying for Cristiano Ronaldo’s mega contract?
|Thu, Feb. 9||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 16||at Al Wehda|
|Fri, Feb. 17||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 17||vs. Al Taawoun|
|Sat, Feb. 25||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 18||at Damac|
|Fri, Mar. 3||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 19||vs. Al Batin|
|Thu, Mar. 9||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 20||at Al Ittihad|
|Tue, Mar. 14||King Cup of Champions||Quarterfinals||vs. Abha|
|Sat, Mar. 18||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 21||vs. Abha|
|April (TBD)||King Cup of Champions||Semifinal||TBD|
|Tue, Apr. 4||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 22||at Al Adalah|
|Sun, Apr. 9||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 23||at Al Feiha|
|Wed, Apr. 26||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 24||vs. Al Raed|
|TBD||King Cup of Champions||Final||TBD*|
|Tue, May 2||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 25||at Al Hilal|
|Mon, May 8||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 26||vs. Al Khaleej|
|Sun, May 14||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 27||at Al Tai|
|Fri, May 19||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 28||vs. Al Shabab|
|Thu, May 25||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 29||at Al Ittifaq|
|Tue, May 30||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 30||vs. Al Fateh|
* Neutral site
Are Al Nassr playing in the Asian Champions League?
This season, Al Nassr did not qualify for the 2022/23 Asian Champions League (known as the AFC Champions League after the confederation name).
The Saudi Pro League gets two qualifying spots into the AFC Champions League, and those are assigned to the league champion and the King Cup champion.
Last season, Al Hilal won the league, while Al Fayha won the cup for the first time in club history.
Should Al Nassr win the 2022/23 Saudi Pro League, they would automatically qualify for next season’s AFC Champions League. Al Nassr have never won the AFC Champions League, but the club did reach the final in 1995, its only appearance in that stage of the tournament.
MORE: Cristiano Ronaldo’s salary in Saudi Arabi; how much does CR7 make?
Al Nassr scores, results 2022/23
Upon Cristiano Ronaldo’s arrival in mid-January, Al Nassr had only lost one match all season, a 1-0 defeat against Al Taawoun back on the second day of the season.
|Aug. 27, 2022||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 1||vs. Al Wehda||Win||1-0|
|Sep. 3, 2022||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 2||at Al Taawoun||Loss||1-0|
|Sep 10, 2022||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 3||vs. Damac||Win||2-1|
|Sep. 15, 2022||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 4||at Al Batin||Win||4-0|
|Oct. 2, 2022||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 5||vs. Al Ittihad||Draw||0-0|
|Oct. 7, 2022||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 6||at Abha||Win||3-0|
|Oct. 11, 2022||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 7||vs. Al Adalah||Win||4-1|
|Oct. 16, 2022||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 8||vs. Al Fayha||Win||4-0|
|Dec. 16, 2022||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 9||at Al Raed||Win||4-1|
|Dec. 21, 2022||King Cup of Champions||Round of 16||vs. Al Adalah||Win||2-0|
|Dec. 26, 2022||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 10||vs. Al Hilal||Draw||2-2|
|Dec. 31, 2022||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 11||at Al. Khaleej||Win||1-0|
|Jan. 6, 2023||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 12||vs. Al Ta’ee||Win||2-0|
|Jan. 14, 2023||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 13||@ Al Shabab||Draw||0-0|
|Jan. 22, 2023||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 14||vs. Ettifaq||Win||1-0|
|Jan. 26, 2023||Saudi Super Cup||Semifinals||vs. Al Ittihad||Loss||3-1|
|Feb. 3, 2023||Saudi Pro League||Matchday 15||@ Al Fateh||Draw||2-2|