Furor erupts over Ronaldo's apparent obscene taunt in Saudi league match

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RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) — Cristiano Ronaldo is reportedly being investigated for making an alleged offensive gesture while playing for Al Nassr in the Saudi Pro League.

Footage on social media appeared to show Ronaldo cupping his ear and repeatedly thrusting his hand forward near his pelvis, seemingly aimed at rival Al Shabab supporters. The incident occurred on Sunday after Al Nassr beat Al Shabab 3-2.

In the background were chants of “Messi.” Lionel Messi is Ronaldo’s longstanding soccer rival.

While the incident was not captured by television cameras, criticism of the 39-year-old Portugal striker has been swift. Local media reports say the Saudi Arabia Football Federation has opened an investigation.

He could face a suspension. Al Nassr's next match is on Thursday.

Ronaldo, who moved to the Riyadh-based club in December 2022, has a league-leading 22 goals. His scored the opener against Al Shabab, a first half penalty.

Al Nassr trails fellow league leader Al Hilal by four points, having played a game more.

Al Nassr is also in the quarterfinals of the Asian Champions League, a tournament it has never won.

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AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer