Who can resist millions?
Saudis buy the next superstars in the league
06/25/2023, 5:20 p.m
Cristiano Ronaldo getting a superstar teammate? Antoine Griezmann is said to be moving to Saudi Arabia. Another Saudi club wants to make Juve boss Massimiliano Allegri the highest-paid manager in the world, while the transfer of a Portuguese international is already fixed.
Will the next superstar follow the lure of money? According to “Foot Mercato”, talks are already underway between Saudi club Al-Nassr and Antoine Griezmann’s representatives. The Frenchman’s contract is said to have an exit clause of only 20 million euros – Cristiano Ronaldo’s club would like to draw it.
The 32-year-old is still under contract with Atlético Madrid and has delivered some strong numbers over the past season. In 38 league games, he had 15 goals and 17 assists. He became world champion with the French national team in 2018, four years later in Qatar he lost with the Équipe Tricolore to the Argentines around superstar Lionel Messi. Griezmann was in the starting XI. France’s Sports Minister Amélie Oudéa Castéra recently wanted Griezmann and Kylian Mbappé to take part in the 2024 Olympic Games. The two and other top athletes are important role models for young people, said the minister in an interview with the newspaper “Ouest France”.
Neves already fixed, Allegri possibly soon
Al-Nassr’s competition doesn’t sleep either: the Saudi Arabian soccer club Al-Hilal apparently wants to lure Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri into the league with an offer of 90 million euros for three years. The Italian media report. If the deal goes through, Allegri would be the best-paid coach in the world. Allegri allegedly had contacts with representatives of Al-Hilal in Monte Carlo these days. The football teacher returned to Juve in 2021 as the successor to the unsuccessful coach Andrea Pirlo. But even Allegri couldn’t change the rudder with the old lady. Under Allegri, Juve have missed out on the Scudetto for the past two seasons.
After Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema (Al-Ittihad Club) and N’Golo Kanté (Al-Ittihad Club), the Saudi football league successfully attracted another top player with lots of money on Friday. Ruben Neves, 26 years old and Portuguese international, is moving from Wolverhampton Wanderers from the English Premier League to record champions Al-Hilal. Neves is said to cost 55 million euros, the Wolves stated that it is the highest transfer fee in the club’s history.
Unlike Ronaldo (38), Benzema (35) and Kanté (32), Neves is not at the end of his career. The defensive midfielder was most recently captain of Wanderers, for whom he played for six years after moving from FC Porto. He appeared for Portugal at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar and most recently in the European Championship qualifiers. Neves has played 41 international matches so far. Neves has signed a contract with Al-Hilal until 2026.