Ronaldo scored twice and Messi scored once in a Riyadh exhibition as the two men took the pitch together for what is likely the last time of their careers.
RIYADH, Saudi Arabia—The rivalry between Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo played out for over a decade in the cathedrals of European soccer. They clashed at the Bernabeu in Madrid, Camp Nou in Barcelona, the Olimpico in Rome, and Old Trafford in Manchester. The stakes were Champions League trophies and Spanish league titles.
But on Thursday night, the final installment in a series that dominated the world’s most popular sport unfolded more than 2,000 miles from any of those storied places. When Messi and Ronaldo took the pitch together for what appears to be the last time, it was inside King Fahd Stadium, a tired relic on the edge of Riyadh. There was nothing on the line for either of them.