Cristiano Ronaldo 'faces possible investigation' after on-pitch 'obscene gesture' in Saudi Arabia

Cristiano Ronaldo is facing criticism after appearing to make an obscene gesture during a football match in Saudi Arabia.

The 39-year-old Portugal international plays for Saudi Pro League team Al-Nassr and scored a penalty as they beat Al Shabab 3-2 on Sunday.

After the final whistle, Ronaldo could be seen cupping his ear and repeatedly moving his hand in front of his pelvic area.

The gesture appeared to be directed at the rival team's supporters, who could be heard chanting the name of his long-term football rival, Lionel Messi.

Ronaldo's actions were not televised but the incident was filmed by fans inside the ground, who have since shared videos on social media.

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According to Saudi newspaper Asharq al-Awsat, the country's national football federation (SAFF) has opened an investigation into the incident.

Waleed Al Farraj, a prominent Saudi writer and television host, said on X: "The disciplinary committee is facing the biggest test. We will wait and see.

"Everything has its limits, no matter how famous you are. This is how the major leagues are."

Ronaldo has faced criticism over similar incidents in the past.

In April last year, he appeared to grab his genitals as he made his way to the dugout after Al-Nassr lost a game.

And earlier this month, he picked up a rival team scarf that had been thrown at him, put it in his shorts and then threw it away as he walked towards the tunnel after the Riyadh Season Cup final.

Ronaldo joined Al-Nassr as a free agent in late 2022, shortly after an acrimonious split from Manchester United.

While his salary has not been publicly confirmed, it is rumoured that the forward is being paid upwards of £160m a year - making him the highest-paid footballer in history.

Ronaldo is currently top of the Saudi league scoring charts, having scored 22 goals in 20 appearances so far this season, while Al-Nassr are second in the league table.