Saudi Arabia's summer transfer spree: Jordan Henderson's potential move, the growing influence in European football, and more.
|Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson is the latest player to be linked to Saudi Arabia, who's next? (Photo credit: GOAL)|
Saudi Arabia continues to move big in the summer transfer window after completing a deal for Lazio’s Serjei Milinkovic Savic and Jordan Henderson is close to moving to the.
The Saudi movement is gaining traction, and despite landing the likes of N’golo Kante, Karim Benzema, and Edouard Mendy, the project is about to take a new turn with news breaking out that Liverpool’s Jordan Henderson is about to join the train.
Steven Gerrard was named Liverpool captain alongside Philippe Coutinho, and these players wouldn’t mind the switch.
Jordan Henderson is actively considering the deal after realising it triples his £200,000-a-week salary. Who will blame him for going for the money?
🚨 BREAKING: Jordan Henderson has accepted Al Ettifaq proposal. There’s verbal agreement in principle. Contract agreed.— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) July 13, 2023
Deal now depends on Liverpool and Al Ettifaq discussing on the fee, no chance to let him leave for free 🇸🇦
Hendo spoke to Klopp today and there’s green light. pic.twitter.com/wJ2CyaHu60
Liverpool have signed Alexis Mac Allister and Dominic Szoboszlai, which means Henderson has been replaced and he can seek greener pastures before they usher him out through the bench.
Does this also mean the Premier League should be worried?
After the acquisition of the highly rated Lazio midfielder Serjei Milinkovic Savic, the Saudi League also launched a bid for Fulham’s Alexander Mitrovic.
But their £25 million bid was rejected on arrival, with Marco Silva’s side hanging on to their prized asset.
Former Chelsea football director Michael Emenalo has also been hired to oversee the development of football in the country.
🚨 EXCL: Saudi Pro League to appoint Michael Emenalo as its first director of football. Former #CFC exec to play key role in building competition/clubs. 57yo will bring staff, add more, develop local talent. Major statement of intent by #SPL @TheAthleticFC https://t.co/GGLZz1rPFZ— David Ornstein (@David_Ornstein) July 12, 2023
And this is a strong statement considering the criticism around their approach and the need for them to develop from the academy.
Gradually, Saudi Arabia is creeping into the heart of Europe, and the latter must be worried. Money is one thing; an appealing project is another.
For all the talk of a quick collapse, the Saudi League is waxing stronger, and top players are heading to the Middle East.
Watch out for the next players to be linked to Saudi Arabia, for the money and for the new experience.
And deep within you, as more England-based players take the offer, you wonder where all the pre-World Cup criticisms of the Middle East went.