ALMERÍA

Messi: Almería chief has Barça, Argentina star over in Riyadh

Turki Al-Sheikh, UD Almería's Saudi owner, watched his club's Segunda División draw with Elche alongside Lionel Messi and other Argentina players.

Messi: Almería chief has Barça star over to watch Elche game
FAYEZ NURELDINE AFP

Turki Al-Sheikh, the recently-installed owner of Spanish Segunda División outfit UD Almería, has been busy keeping both himself and his new club in the headlines.

Having already tried to change the team's badge and colours, met up with top-level coaches such as José Mourinho, and publicly exhorted Lionel Messi to join Los Rojiblancos in the future, the Saudi yesterday invited the Argentine to his Riyadh home to watch Almería's league match at Elche.

Messi and co watch Almería draw with Al-Sheikh

Messi, who led Argentina to a friendly win over Brazil in the Saudi capital on Friday, was joined by international colleagues including Paulo Dybala and Sergio Agüero, as they watched Almería draw 1-1 - a result that left the Andalusians third in Segunda, two points off an automatic promotion place.

Al-Sheikh, who completed his take over of Almería in August, was active on social media during the visit, posting a video and a photograph of himself with the players, before publishing a further video in which he can be heard talking to Messi as the group prepared to take in the Riyadh Season Boulevard leisure complex.

Argentina face Uruguay on Monday

Following Friday's 1-0 victory over Brazil - claimed courtesy of Messi's first-half goal - Argentina now take on Uruguay in Tel Aviv on Monday.