- Shamser Khalid
Saudi Tourism Minister Welcomes Messi and Family
Lionel Messi, the world-famous Argentinian footballer, has made his second visit to Saudi Arabia, prompting excitement from fans around the world. The Minister of Tourism, Ahmed Al-Khateeb, took to Twitter to welcome Messi and his family to the Kingdom, highlighting the country's unique hospitality and welcoming nature.
During his visit, Messi and his family were able to enjoy the Saudi sun and traditional board games, as well as feed an Arabian gazelle with his sons. Fans took to social media to share their excitement at Messi's arrival, with many noting the footballer's love for exploring the country's natural wonders.
Details Behind Messi's Arriving in Saudi Arabia
The Paris Saint-Germain superstar traveled to the Middle East just a day after his team's shock defeat to Lorient in Ligue 1. But it seems there's more to his visit than just a holiday.
Reports suggest that Messi's trip may be part of his contract with the Saudi Arabian government, as he is the country's tourism ambassador. The Argentine signed the contract in 2022 and has been promoting the country on his social media platforms ever since.
Just before his flight to Saudi Arabia, Messi posted a message on Instagram promoting tourism in the country. "Who thought Saudi has so much green? I love to explore its unexpected wonders whenever I can," he wrote.
Response to Messi's Departure
Lionel Messi's recent trip to Saudi Arabia has reportedly caused surprise among several Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) players. According to a report by RMC Sport, the PSG dressing room was caught off guard when news of Messi's commercial visit to the Middle East broke. The players were puzzled by the news, which they received during training on Monday. PSG coach Christophe Galtier and sporting director Luis Campos were also unaware of Messi's travel plans.
Messi recently went to Disneyland Paris with his family, but fans recognized him despite his attempts to remain hidden. Rothen, a former PSG player, has criticized Messi for joining the team for the money rather than caring about the club. Talks of Messi returning to Barcelona have surfaced, but Barcelona needs to raise €200 million before signing new players or reducing wages.
While the PSG players' surprise at Messi's trip may be understandable, it remains to be seen whether Rothen's criticisms of the football superstar are fair or not. Regardless, Messi's visit to Saudi Arabia as the country's tourism ambassador has sparked some intrigue and controversy.
Messi's Previous Visits
Messi has previously visited the Kingdom for the annual Jeddah Season festival and has also served as an ambassador for Visit Saudi, the tourism ministry's promotional brand. His visit highlights Saudi Arabia's commitment to showcasing its natural and cultural treasures to international and domestic tourists, as part of the reforms known as Saudi Vision 2030.
As one of the most beloved and celebrated footballers in the world, Messi's endorsement of Saudi Arabia's tourism industry is sure to attract even more visitors to the country in the coming years. With its rich history, stunning natural beauty, and warm hospitality, Saudi Arabia is quickly becoming a top destination for travelers from around the world.