Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice as Al Nassr edged Al Ahli 4-3 in a thrilling Saudi Pro League clash in Riyadh on Friday.
Ronaldo scored early in both halves to bookend the scoring for Al Nassr, who managed to stave off multiple comeback attempts from their fellow star-studded opponents.
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The Portugal great opened the scoring in the fourth minute with a low left-footed shot after being found by ex-Liverpool forward Sadio Mané. He then got Al Nassr’s fourth goal in the 52nd minute with another clinical finish on his left foot following a neat turn on the edge of the penalty box.
In between, Brazilian forward Anderson Talisca scored two goals of his own in the first half, the first from the penalty spot and the second with a stunning strike off the underside of the crossbar.
On three occasions, Al Ahli got to within a single goal of the home side. Former Barcelona midfielder Franck Kessié found the net in the first half and Algerian winger Riyad Mahrez converted a penalty in the second before substitute Feras Al-Brikan ensured a nervy finish after making it 4-3 in the 87th minute.
Al Nassr have now recorded five wins in a row in the league after losing their first two games of the season. This latest victory takes them level on points with Al Ahli and up to fifth in the Saudi Pro League standings.
Al Nassr and Al Ahli are two of the four clubs that were taken over by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) ahead of a big summer of spending that saw several star names in Europe move to the Saudi Pro League.