Cristiano Ronaldo faces backlash for gesture in Saudi league match.

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Cristiano Ronaldo found himself under a barrage of criticism following what seemed to be an obscene gesture after Al Nassr's thrilling 3-2 victory over Al Shabab in a Saudi Pro League match on Sunday.

The Portuguese star opened the scoring with a penalty in the 21st minute, but it took a late brace from Brazilian Talisca, including a goal four minutes before the final whistle, to seal the win for Al Nassr.

After the game concluded, videos circulating on social media captured Ronaldo cupping his ear and making repeated pumping motions in front of his pelvic area, seemingly aimed at the opposing Al Shabab fans. In the background, chants of "Messi" could be heard, referencing Ronaldo's perennial football rival from Argentina.

While the incident wasn't captured by television cameras, some Saudi pundits called for sanctions against Ronaldo. Saudi newspaper Asharq al-Awsat reported that the national football federation had initiated an investigation into the matter.

Waleed Al Farraj, a prominent Saudi writer and television host, expressed his views on social media, saying, "The disciplinary committee is facing its toughest challenge yet. We will wait and see. Regardless of one's fame, there are limits. This is how major leagues operate."

Al Nassr declined to comment immediately on the incident.

This isn't the first time the 39-year-old Ronaldo has faced such criticism. In April 2023, he drew ire for what appeared to be a genital-grabbing gesture as he headed to the dugout after Al Nassr's 2-0 loss to Al Hilal. Earlier this month, during the Riyadh Season Cup final, he grabbed an Al Hilal scarf thrown at him from the stands, briefly placed it in his shorts, and then discarded it on his way to the tunnel after Al Nassr's 2-0 defeat.

Ronaldo, who joined Al Nassr as a free agent in late 2022, leads the Saudi league's scoring charts with 22 goals in 20 appearances this season. Al Nassr currently sits second in the table with 52 points, trailing Al Hilal by four points, with a game in hand.

Additionally, Al Nassr is in contention for the Asian Champions League, a tournament they've never won. They are scheduled to face Al-Ain of the United Arab Emirates in the quarterfinals next month.