Al Nassr vs Abha score, result, highlights as Karl Toko Ekambi stuns wasteful Cristiano Ronaldo on late goal

Al Nassr didn’t have their best day, but they seemed en route towards extending their winning streak to seven, moving within a point of the Saudi Pro League summit in the process.

Karl Toko Ekambi had other ideas.

The Cameroon international drove a stake into the hearts of Cristiano Ronaldo’s side as his 92nd minute equaliser stunned the hosts and shared the points, punishing Al Nassr for their inability to finish a wave of chances across the 90 minutes.

Cristiano Ronaldo struggled in front of net, seeing his six-game scoring streak come to an end as he missed multiple opportunities to score. He was involved in the two goals, producing a sensational back-heel to ignite Otavio’s opener just three minutes in, but he failed to put a host of other opportunities on frame.

Sadio Mane was the best player on the pitch, troubling the Abha defensive unit down the left flank throughout the match. However, despite dominance through the first half and in stretches across the final 45 minutes, Al Nassr were unable to make good on their extensive attacking intent, and their missed chances allowed Abha to hang around as the 90 minutes waned.

Abha, led by the dangerous Toko Ekambi, had a few chances themselves go begging, and Saad Bguir’s penalty gave them a way in before halftime. As Al Nassr continued to misfire through the entire second half, Toko Ekambi cropped up two minutes into stoppage time with the all-important moment to pull the sides level.

MORE: Saudi Pro League top goal scorers as Cristiano Ronaldo chases Golden Boot award

The Sporting News followed the Al Nassr vs Abha match live, providing score updates, commentary and highlights as they happened.

Al Nassr vs Abha final score

  Score Goal scorers
Al Nassr 2 Otavio (3′),
Talisca (29′)
Abha 2 Bguir (36′),
Toko Ekambi (90+2′)

Kickoff: 6 p.m. local (11 a.m. ET / 4 p.m. UK)
Location: King Saud University Stadium (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia)
Referee: Mario Alberto Escobar Toca (GUA)

Starting lineups:

Al Nassr (4-2-3-1, right to left): 44. Alaqidi (GK) — 2. Al Ghanam, 78. Lajami, 27. Laporte, 15. Telles — 17. Al Khaibari, 77. Brozovic (Fofana, 80′) — 94. Talisca, 25. Otavio, 10. Mane (Ghareeb, 80′) — 7. Ronaldo.

Abha (4-2-3-1, right to left): 16. Tatarusanu (GK) — 17. Al Qumayzi, 18. Noguera, 6. Hbeab, 3. Naji — 21. Sudani, 5. Krychowiak — 10. Bguir (Jumayah, 71′), 8. Matic, 11. Kamano (Al Kunaydiri, 80′) — 7. Toko Ekambi.

Al Nassr vs Abha live updates, highlights, commentary

FULLTIME: Al Nassr 2-2 Abha

What a finish! Al Nassr seemed well on their way to a seventh straight win despite the failure to finish chances, but those missed opportunities are eventually punished as Karl Toko Ekambi’s late goal stuns the hosts and leaves them rueing their wastefulness.

Instead of pulling within a point of the league leaders, Al Nassr are left with just a spot in fourth, level with Al Ittihad on points but ahead on goal differential. Still, those around them have a game in hand, and Al Nassr are left without a chance to pull within striking distance of the summit.

Luis Castro, who just won the league’s Manager of the Month award for September, will no doubt face heavy criticism for withdrawing Sadio Mane before full-time, as the Senegal international had been excellent.

The point for Abha is as valuable as they come, pulling the club out of the relegation zone by a hair, into 15th and above Al Ta’ee on goal differential.

Al Nassr vs Abha: Second Half

90+2 min: GOAL! ABHA! Oh, WHAT A GOAL from Karl Toko Ekambi to stun Al Nassr at the death! It comes from nothing, as Toko Ekambi latched onto a 50/50 ball atop the penalty area and deposited an absolutely glittering effort into the top corner past a diving Nawaf Alaqidi! A gut punch to the hosts!

86th min: Chance, Al Nassr! Cristiano Ronaldo forces a good save from Ciprian Tatarusanu at the near post! He’s looking to sneak in a low effort but the Romanian goalkeeper has it covered with a diving stop, conceding a corner.

Just moments later, Ronaldo misses left again following an Abha turnover in midfield, dragging his shot poorly that skids through the legs of the defender but wide of the post.

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Fahad Mohammed bin Jumayah is down receiving treatment for a cut to the head, and replay shows he took an elbow from Alex Telles to the forehead. The Brazilian full-back is fortunate to not be punished for the incident, especially just minutes after Jumayah was booked for a similar scenario.

83rd min: Abha substitute Fahad Mohammed bin Jumayah is booked for an elbow to the face of Alex Telles, but then nearly creates a problem for Al Nassr as he dispossesses goalkeeper Nawaf Al Aqidi, but the ball rolls away from danger as both tumble to the ground.

77th min: Chance, Al Nassr! Oh my, Al Nassr very nearly scored a Goal of the Season candidate! One-touch passing links multiple players together at the top of the penalty area, pinging the ball back and forth, but Cristiano Ronaldo can’t get the finish and he fires it over the top of the goal mouth!

Both sides make changes, as Abdulrahman Ghareeb comes on for Al Nassr in place of the electric Sadio Mane, and Seko Fofana enters in place of Marcelo Brozovic. Abha brings on Mohammed Al Kunaydiri to replace Francois Kamano.

75th min: Chance, Abha! Anderson Talisca goes down in the penalty area and screams for a foul but the official waves play on and tells him to get up.

Abha go straight down the other end, and Karl Toko Ekambi forces a big save from Nawaf Al Aqidi from close range!

73rd min: Al Nassr have a very dangerous free-kick chance as Sadio Mane is clipped to the ground by Saleh Al Qumayzi, who is booked for the foul. There’s a big crowd around the ball as both teams sort themselves out, until the referee clears out the Abha players and Cristiano Ronaldo stands alone over the ball.

He rifles a blistering blast towards goal but it clatters the wall and cannons back out.

71st min: Chance, Al Nassr! Sadio Mane beats his defender vertically and delivers a quiality cross, and Anderson Talisca gets his head to it but sends the chance just over the crossbar!

Incredibly, we’ve gone this far without either side making a change, but Abha head coach Czeslaw Michniewicz blinks first as he brings on Fahad Mohammed bin Jumayah to replace the goal scorer Saad Bguir.

66th min: Chance, Al Nassr! Cristiano Ronaldo has the ball in the net but the flag goes up for offside! Marcelo Brozovic feeds him through but replay confirms that Ronaldo was miles offside on the delivery, as were a pair of other Al Nassr attackers.

Abha executed a fantastic offside trap, with the whole defensive line stepping up on the delivery.

65th min: Al Nassr remain the more likely to score here in the second half, but Abha have looked far more organised at the back. There is much less room for the Al Nassr attackers to operate in the final third, and Abha have continued to cause the occasional problem on the counter. Overall, this match will remain in the balance unless Al Nassr get a third or the final whistle blows.

60th min: Sadio Mane works his way into the penalty area, but is whistled for a foul as his flailing arms catch his defender in the face. Surprising he’s not booked for that, as Mane seemed to be a bit out of control while muscling past the Abha challenger.

57th min: Chance, Al Nassr! Anderson Talisca puts a glorious chance wide! He heads past the far post after latching onto a cross from deep. The Brazilian was well clear of his defender and should do better.

55th min: Chance, Abha! Cleared off the line by Sultan Al Ghanam!

Karl Toko Ekambi has been dangerous on the counter, and he nearly picks out the equaliser, shooting through the legs of a charging Nawaf Al Aqidi, but the Al Nassr goalkeeper gets enough of a touch on the ball to slow the effort, and as it rolls towards the goal mouth, Al Ghanam can recover and fire the ball away!

52nd min: Chance, Al Nassr! Cristiano Ronaldo finds space for a shot from the top of the penalty area, and while he gets the power on his low drive, it’s way too centrally located and fired right at the Abha goalkeeper. You’d expect him to do better with that!

Otavio requires treatment after the play as he was felled by Fabian Noguera before Ronaldo picked up the loose ball. Noguera was booked in the aftermath, either for the late tackle or his vigorous protests afterwards.

47th min: Al Nassr are straight into the attack and have a few half-chances but can’t quite find the right finish. Sultan Al Ghanam tries a bicycle kick but hits it awkwardly, and Sadio Mane doesn’t have room for a shot just outside the six-yard box. Eventually Otavio fires a shot high and the move ends.

Kickoff: The second half is under way, with no changes from either side.

HALFTIME: Al Nassr 2-1 Abha

The hosts were in control nearly the entire first 45 minutes, but a few defensive errors have seen Abha back into the match late. Goals from Otavio and Anderson Talisca put Al Nassr 2-0 up, and it felt as if that would only get worse as the match went on.

However, Otavio conceded a silly penalty to put Abha on the board through Saad Bguir, and then a few other nervy moments at the back for Al Nassr will see them worried slightly that the lead could completely fall apart.

Still, on the whole, they are completely in control and should manage to see this out if things continue.

Al Nassr vs Abha: First Half

45+5 min: Chance, Al Nassr! Cristiano Ronaldo hits the crossbar with a header! He meets a lateral cross from the right flank at the far post, and from a tight angle he heads on goal but clatters the woodwork. Close!

45+3 min: Chance, Abha! Zakaria Al Sudani puts it over with a glorious chance to equalise! On a free-kick, the delivery is dropped in a bucket at the far post, and then headed centrally to the Abha midfielder who contorts his body to his the ball with a scissor kick. Yet somehow he blasts it high over the crossbar from about six yards out! What a chance missed!

45+1 min: WHAT A TACKLE BY ALI LAJAMI!! Karl Toko Ekambi forces a mistake by Sultan Al Ghanam in possession and is clean through on goal, but Lajami comes out of NOWHERE to slide in and take the ball off Toko Ekambi’s feet as he prepared to shoot! That was a sure goal for Abha taken away in one deft move!

44th min: The Abha defensive unit has performed well today while under heavy pressure, despite the two goals conceded. Ahmad Al Hbeab has been especially impressive, and here he manages to win the ball despite laying flat on the ground and surrounded by two Al Nassr attackers.

38th min: Al Nassr have a dangerous free-kick chance after Otavio clowns a defender with a bit of tekkers and is felled for his efforts. Cristiano Ronaldo is not on the set-piece, as instead Anderson Talisca stands over the ball which is about 23 yards from goal.

The Brazilian takes aim but blasts his hit into the wall.

33rd min: PENALTY, ABHA! Otavio has a moment of madness, and barrels over Zakaria Al Sudani as he prepares to strike a ball in the air. It’s a moronic decision by the Al Nassr playmaker, and the referee points directly to the spot. VAR has a review of the decision, but the penalty stands.

Stepping up to take is Saad Bguir and he scores! GOAL! ABHA! He sends Nawaf Al Aqidi the wrong way and buries the penalty inside the left post!

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29th min: GOAL! AL NASSR! Anderson Talisca doubles the lead for the hosts! Cristiano Ronaldo starts the move at the top of the penalty area, feeding Sadio Mane out wide left. The Senegal international fires a right-footed cross to Talisca streaking on goal, and he finishes calmly with one touch.

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24th min: Al Nassr continue to cook in the penalty area, as Sadio Mane and Cristiano Ronaldo all get on the ball as they build, but a shot eventually flies wide as Ronaldo takes the ball off a teammate’s feet.

At the other end, Al Nassr goalkeeper Alaqidi nearly has his pocket picked by Karl Toko Ekambi in possession, but he deftly steps to his left and sees the Abha striker go flying by.

18th min: Only a great tackle by Ahmad Al Hbeab keeps Anderson Talisca from being clean through on goal, and he wins the goal kick as well after the ball clips off Talisca last before skittering over the goal line. The Abha defence is under total siege right now.

16th min: Chance, Al Nassr! It’s an onslaught from the hosts right now, as Anderson Talisca fires a curling left-footed effort just wide of the near post! The goalkeeper was nowhere near the shot, meaning that’s in the net if it’s on frame!

14th min: Chance, Al Nassr! Cristiano Ronaldo puts a trademark header over the crossbar! He rose high, as he is well-known to do, and met a lateral cross from the right, but its thundered over the woodwork! A chance missed for the Saudi Pro League goals leader.

13th min: Al Nassr are into the attack again, and Sadio Mane threads Cristiano Ronaldo in, and with the Portuguese international on a tight angle, he cuts it back to the top of the six-yard box, but it’s cut out by the Abha defence.

6th min: Al Nassr have controlled play since the opener, and Sadio Mane has a go in front of goal but puts his shot wide left.

3rd min: GOAL! AL NASSR! Otavio has put the hosts in front just three minutes in! It’s a sumptuous goal that’s started by Cristiano Ronaldo with a delicious back-heel to Marcelo Brozovic. The Croatian holds up play for a moment before squaring to Otavio at the penalty spot, and he buries the chance!

Kickoff: The match is under way! The home fans have a special “BOOM!” message for Marcelo Brozovic. It’s a nod to his bomb tattoo on his neck, which he touches and then blows a kiss to the fans acknowledging their support.

Al Nassr vs Abha: Pre-match commentary, analysis, stats, and more

15 mins to kickoff: Cristiano Ronaldo is your Saudi Pro League player of the month for September!

30 mins to kickoff: It’s a boon for Al Nassr to have Otavio healthy and in the lineup because Marcelo Brozovic can move back to his natural No. 8 position. Seko Fofana hasn’t exactly hit the ground running at Al Nassr, so he must bide his time for a regular spot.

45 mins to kickoff: Lineups are in. Cristiano Ronaldo and Sadio Mane both start, with surprise inclusion Otavio at the No. 10 in support. It was thought the 28-year-old would miss out due to injury, but he’s proven fit for action. His availability pushes Marcelo Brozovic back in midfield, and sees Seko Fofana drop out of the side altogether.

1 hour to kickoff: Cristiano Ronaldo has arrived with the rest of the Al Nassr squad for this match! He has 10 goals in seven league games, leading the Saudi Pro League in scoring through the early portion of the year.

He has picked it up of late, with at least one goal in each of his last six, a streak started by his hat-trick against Al Fateh on August 25. It also includes a brace against Al Shabab on August 29 and another double against Al Ahli on September 22. The Portuguese star is on absolute fire at the moment.

1 hour 15 mins to kick: Al Nassr’s home venue, King Saud University Stadium, known for sponsorship reasons as Al-Awwal Park, has quite the unique look to it! The seats are adorned with cartoonish lightning bolts and the word “Boom!” in bubble letters, which are a special tifo for the fans to raise just before kickoff.

1 hour 30 mins to kickoff: Cristiano Ronaldo’s goal scoring streak has sparked a wider run of form up front for Al Nassr, as the whole squad gets going in front of goal. Outside of Ronaldo’s 10 goals, Sadio Mane has six of his own, while Anderson Talisca has four in league play, all coming in the last three matches.

Al Nassr vs Abha lineups & team news

It was thought Al Nassr would be without Portugal international Otavio for this tie, but he starts, moving Marcelo Brozovic back in midfield and bumping Seko Fofana out of the lineup. Ronaldo and Talisca have been in superb recent goal scoring form, and they continue up front.

Sadio Mane comes back into the side, having been rested in midweek, while Sultan Al Ghannam misses out with an injury and Abdulrahman Ghareeb begins on the bench.

Al Nassr starting lineup (4-2-3-1): Alaqidi (GK) — Al Ghanam, Lajami, Laporte, Telles — Al Khaibari, Brozovic — Talisca, Otavio, Mane — Ronaldo.

Al Nassr subs (9): Waleed, Fatil, Boushal, Qassem, Fofana, Sami, Khalid, Ghareeb, Ayman.

Abha head into this game inside the relegation zone. Their starting line up features recognisable names including Karl Toko EkambiNemanja Matic, and Grzegorz Krychowiak, but it just hasn’t clicked for the side yet.

Abha starting lineup (4-2-3-1): Tatarusanu (GK) — Al Qumayzi, Noguera, Al Sudani, Naji — Sudani, Krychowiak — Bguir, Matic, Kamano — Toko Ekambi.

Abha subs (9): Al Shammry, Abdu, Al-Ali, Alselouli, bin Jumayah, Al Oufi, Al Kunaydiri, Al Sahafi, Al Bouq.

How to watch Al Nassr vs Abha

  TV channel Streaming
USA Fox Soccer Plus, Fox Deportes Fubo, Fox Sports App
Canada  — DAZN
Australia  — 10 Play
India  Sony Ten 1 Sony Liv, Jio TV
Hong Kong  — SPOTV
Malaysia  — SPOTV
Singapore  — SPOTV

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