An official announced on Tuesday that a Saudi Arabian businessman won an auction for a ticket to witness Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo compete in a friendly match by spending $2.6 million. The match will be between two of the best players in the world. Paris Saint-Germain will play a match on Thursday in Riyadh against a combined XI from Ronaldo’s new club Al Nassr and their Saudi rivals Al Hilal. The match is slated to take place on Thursday. Ronaldo will make his first appearance in the Middle East after signing a deal with Al Nassr that extends through 2025 and is worth more than 214 million euros. Sunday is the day when the five-time winner of the Ballon d’Or is expected to make his debut with Al Nassr in the Saudi Pro League.
Turki al-Sheikh, an advisor at the Royal Court and head of Saudi Arabia’s General Entertainment Authority, has announced a charity auction for a special ticket that will come with perks such as photo opportunities with players and access to the locker rooms. This auction is being held to promote the friendship that will take place on Thursday. The auction began with a starting bid of 1 million Saudi riyals, which is equivalent to $266,000. It ended at 11:30 p.m. local time on Tuesday.
After thereafter, Sheikh revealed on Twitter that the winning offer of 10 million riyals (about $2.6 million) had been submitted by Mushref al-Ghamdi as a real estate mogul. Sheikhs congratulated them and prayed that God would shower them with blessings. “You deserve it,” he remarked. The funds raised from the auction are going to be donated to a charitable drive on a national scale that is known as Ehsan.
PSG talents such as France forward Kylian Mbappe and Achraf Hakimi, who contributed to Morocco becoming the first Arab and African team to reach the World Cup semifinals, are also scheduled to feature on Thursday with Messi. Salem Al-Dawsari, who scored the game-winning goal for the Green Falcons in their stunning victory against Argentina in the group stage of the World Cup, is a member of the Saudi national team’s elite squad.