Cristiano Ronaldo will have to wait until January 21 before he can make his debut for Al Nassr, his new team in Saudi Arabia.
While it was anticipated that he will start in the Saudi Pro League against Al Ta’ee on Thursday, with 28,000 fans buying tickets, Marca reported that they will have to wait.
Ronaldo’s painfully protracted parting from Manchester United has one last chapter to be played out, with the Old Trafford snap casting one more shadow.
Ronaldo is currently serving suspension because of the time he smashed an Everton fan’s phone out of their hand whilst leaving the pitch at Goodison Park in November, quotes Marca.
“He has a two-match ban to serve and even though it was handed to him by the English Football Association, it still transfers with him to Saudi Arabia. In accordance with article 12.1 of FIFA’s Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players, Ronaldo must face the last outstanding penalty he left in the Premier League, although he has even changed continents,” Marca wrote.
“Any disciplinary sanction of up to four matches or up to three months that has been imposed on a player by the previous association but not yet (fully) served at the time of transfer shall be enforced by the new association with which the player is registered in order for the sanction to be enforced at national level,” says the regulations about the ban.
The incident also saw him pay a fine. He left United without playing another game for the Red Devils. “It is never easy to deal with emotions in difficult moments like the one we are facing,” Cristiano wrote to apologize to the fan and invited him to Old Trafford, as per Marca, “but he will not be able to fulfil that commitment either.”
The two-match ban means in addition to missing the expected debut against Al Ta’ee, Ronaldo will also miss playing against Al Shabab. He will resume in the 14th round of the Saudi Arabian League against Al Ettifaq on January 21.
In the last two days after landing in Riyadh on Monday, Ronaldo underwent a medical,
then took part in an open training session with his new teammates, after signing a mammoth £173 million-a-year contract.
Sportbible claimed, “He also fielded questions from the media, claiming he had received ‘many opportunities’ from different clubs in Europe ahead of signing for Al Nassr. The ban carries onto his new club and prevents him from starring for Al Nassr until they have played two competitive games that he would have been available,” adding “SPORTbible have reached out to the FA to confirm whether Ronaldo is banned from making his debut for Al Nassr.”