By Alan Duffy
Colombian Juan Pablo Pino obviously didn’t invest in a copy of The A-Z Of Saudi Etiquette when he moved on loan from Galatasaray to Saudi Arabian club Al Nassr in the summer.
The winger was arrested by Saudi “moral police” in a shopping mall in Riyadh after fellow shoppers complained about the Colombian’s tattoos on his arms, which were exposed by his sleeveless top. Rather than the usual clichéd footballer tats (see Chinese writing, snakes or stars etc), Pino’s body is adorned in religious symbols, including the face of Jesus, which, as you can imagine, didn’t go down to well in the extremely strict Saudi Arabia.
Eventually the Colombian did escape the wrath of the country’s hardcore justice system and was released after expressing “deep sorrow” for his actions.
The Saudi Football Federation had sent a circular to all clubs asking their players to respect the country’s traditions and keep their dodgy tats hidden in public but I guess Pino missed that one.
If only the FA could send around a similar memo, warning footballers to keep every single one of their naff tats hidden at all times.