In the press room at Al-Nasr Stadium in Mrsul Park, all eyes were on Cristiano Ronaldo. The arrival of the Portuguese star in Saudi Arabia on the third day of 2023 became the sporting event of the year and was greeted with expected pomp and thoroughness by both the thousands of fans who filled the stands and the dozens of journalists who covered the event.
Among them, one figure stood out in particular from the rest: a woman in an Islamic headscarf who led a press conference which preceded the performance on the lawn. This was not an isolated case: already in front of the fans, Ronaldo answered the questions of two presenters – men. and a woman who, to the surprise of some, had her hair uncovered.
But who are these women anyway? Press conference host – Wim Al Dahil; the one on the field is called Fatma Fahad. They are both Saudi TV journalists and two of the most visible faces of the apparent change (which some see as mere propaganda) that has been heralded by the Saudi regime as part of its Vision 2030.