Thursday, June 20, 2024

Al-Riyadh 2-2 Al-Nassr: Laporte sent off for punch as Al-Nemer salvages point

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 23 May 2024

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Former Manchester City defender Aymeric Laporte was sent off for punching Mohammed Al-Aqel on the arm as Al-Nassr played out a 2-2 draw with Al-Riyadh in the Saudi Pro League.

Meshari Al-Nemer’s 97th-minute strike salvaged a point for Al-Nassr, who had trailed for over half the game and played with a one-man disadvantage for over half an hour.

Otavio had put Al-Nassr ahead only for Andre Gray to drag the hosts level, before Al-Aqel gave David Ospina no chance with a terrific overhead kick to make it 2-1.

Al-Nassr’s position was put in further jeopardy when Laporte was sent off following a bizarre off-the-ball incident which saw him grab and punch Al-Aqel on the elbow, while Cristiano Ronaldo came up with a glaring miss from Sadio Mane’s pass across the six-yard box.

Al-Nemer levelled at the death for Al-Nassr, though they still sit some 14 points adrift of champions Al-Hilal, who could complete an unbeaten season against Al-Wehda on Monday.

Data Debrief: Laporte’s horror show

It was a game to forget for Laporte, whose bizarre punch on Al-Aqel put Al-Nassr up against it versus a team still in danger of relegation.

Laporte did not attempt a single tackle in the game while his four duels contested were the joint-fewest of every outfield starter (alongside Khalid Al-Shuwayyi). He was also sent off in Al-Nassr’s AFC Champions League quarter-final tie against Al Ain in March.

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