Neymar, Benzema Dazzle in Traditional Saudi Attire to Celebrate National Day

Neymar, Benzema Dazzle in Traditional Saudi Attire to Celebrate National Day

Edwin Kiplagat
updated at September 24, 2023 at 9:33 AM
In this article:
Neymar da Silva Santos Júnior logo
Al-Hilal Saudi FC logoFBrazil logo
Karim Benzema logo
Al-Ittihad Club logoFFrance logo
Cristiano Ronaldo logo
C. Ronaldo
Al Nassr FC logoFPortugal logo
Sadio Mané logo
S. Mané
Al Nassr FC logoFSenegal logo
Riyad Mahrez logo
R. Mahrez
Al-Ahli SFC logoFAlgeria logo
  • Neymar joined other footballers in Saudi Arabia to celebrate the country's National Day
  • Neymar wore the traditional dress and performed the traditional dance
  • Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema are other players who donned the traditional dress

Top football stars Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar and Karim Benzema donned the Saudi traditional dress to celebrate the Kingdom's 93rd National Day on September 23.

The special day, also known as Al-Yaom-ul-Watany, celebrates the unification of the Kingdom.

Neymar, Karim Benzema, Al-Hilal, Al-Ittihad, Saudi Pro League, Cristiano Ronaldo, Sadio Mane
The Saudi Pro League is now a major player in the football world. Photos by Anadolu Agency and Karim Benzema (X).
Source: Getty Images

Neymar and other Al-Hilal players donned the Saudi dress comprising a "thobe" (traditional robe), "shemagh" (headscarf), and "aqal" (headband) to perform the traditional dance known as Ardha.

It was an eventful day in Saudi Arabia, especially for players in the Saudi Pro League clubs who are celebrating the national day for the first time.

The Brazilian footballer was not the only SPL star to join in the festivities. Al-Ittihad striker Karim Benzema and Al-Nassr striker Cristiano Ronaldo and his teammate Sadio Mane also wore the traditional attire.

Benzema posted a photo of himself in the complete attire, attracting 2.3 million likes on Instagram. Al-Nassr's post of Ronaldo wearing the thobe garnered 1.7 million likes. Neymar's post was liked 4.2 million times.

Rapid growth of Saudi pro league

Ever since Ronaldo joined Al-Nassr earlier this year, several players from Europe's top clubs have flocked to the Middle Eastern Country, landing lucrative contracts.

Neymar, Benzema, Mane and Riyad Mahrez have raised the profile of the league, making it popular among football fans.

So far in the 2023/24 season, Benzema's Al-Ittihad sit top of the SPL with 18 points after winning six of their first seven games. Neymar's Al-Hilal are second with 17 points, while Ronaldo's Al-Nassr are 5th with 15 points.

After seven games, Ronaldo leads the goalscoring charts with nine goals, Mane has six, while Benzema has three, per Transfermarkt.

Ronaldo performs Saudi traditional dance

Sports Brief also reported on Ronaldo showcasing his appreciation for Saudi culture by performing a traditional dance after scoring two goals for Al-Nassr in their Saudi Pro League match against Al-Shabab.

The Portuguese veteran and club captain, who has been in excellent goal-scoring form since the start of the new season, played a pivotal role in the Knights of Najd's dominant win at home at Al-Awwal Park.

Following his penalty, Ronaldo momentarily set aside his signature 'Siuuu' celebration and other newer styles in favour of showcasing Saudi Arabian culture by displaying his dancing skills.

Edwin Kiplagat photo
Edwin Kiplagat
Edwin Kiplagat has five years of experience in journalism working as a Sports Editor at Africa Insight Communications and ESPN. Edwin Kiplagat is a Bachelor's Degree holder in journalism from the Multimedia University of Kenya.