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PSG to receive £8.8 million when Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo meet in Saudi All-Star friendly

James Aldred

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PSG to receive £8.8 million when Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo meet in Saudi All-Star friendly

Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the biggest debates in the beautiful game.

And on Thursday afternoon, we'll get to see the two superstars lock horns as PSG take on a Saudi All-Star XI in Riyadh.

According to L'Equipe, the Ligue 1 champions are set to pocket an astonishing £8.8 million for playing in the one-off match.

That fee will be welcomed by the Parisians, as they posted a year long deficit of £325 million last season.

Thursday's fixture will feature a number of stars of the Saudi game and will be Ronaldo's first appearance on that side of the world since completing his transfer to Al Nassr last month.

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The 37 year old is expected to wear the All-Stars armband too.

With both Messi and Ronaldo on the wrong side of 30, many think this could be the last time the two legendary players face off.

The purchase will allow him to watch the match alongside Turki Al Sheikh, Chairman of General Entertainment Authority and provide him with access to both dressing rooms and the winner's ceremony at full time.

This will be the 35th time Messi and Ronaldo have come up against each other in all competitions and their first meeting since Juventus took on Barcelona at an empty Nou Camp in 2020.

The Argentine has the edge overall, having won 15 of the clashes, compared to Ronaldo's 10.

However, despite this and Messi's recent World Cup win in Qatar, some still insist that the Portuguese forward is the better player and that he's still got plenty to give at new club Al-Nassr.

"I do believe that he’s driven more by records and legacy than he is by money," says TalkTV presenter and long time Ronaldo fan Piers Morgan, as quoted by The Sun.

"He’s already got half a billion pounds so it’s not like he needs a few quid in Saudi Arabia.

"He just happens to be getting a stupendous payday to build football there from a very good platform of beating the World Champions (Saudi Arabia defeated Argentina in their opening game of the 2022 World Cup).

Ronaldo will make his Al Nassr debut later this month. (Image Credit: Alamy)
Ronaldo will make his Al Nassr debut later this month. (Image Credit: Alamy)

"So things did change a lot in the last few months in terms of the narrative of football in the Middle East. It was a tremendous World Cup for the region generally, so it looks a little less crazy than it would have done six months ago when Saudi were a complete irrelevance in football."

Let's see how he and Messi get on on Thursday.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Paris Saint-Germain, Al Nassr, Saudi Arabia

James Aldred
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