Manchester United in Talks with ‘Rich’ Saudi Pro League Clubs
Several players are up for sale and Manchester United is sure that Saudi Pro League clubs would be all too happy to grab them. John Murtough, Manchester United’s football director, wants to rid off Jadon Sancho, Raphael Varane, Anthony Martial and Casemiro, the club’s under-performing players.
But the Saudi Clubs are not keen on recruiting fresh talent, their overseas quota has already been filled with Karim Benzema, Sadio Mane, N’Golo Kante, Ruben Neves, and Jordan Henderson. Murtough had a secret meeting with Saudi clubs on Monday. He is very keen to let go of winger Sancho after he fell out with Erik ten Hag in September.
Manchester United (Man Utd) had brought in Sancho as one of the most exciting footballers having scored 38 goals and provided 51 assists in 104 Bundesliga games. However, the 23-year-old hasn’t shown the same magic for the English club.
Man Utd Under Pressure
Word is that Manchester United is under pressure to sell off the players the club is close to breaching the Premier League’s financial rules; it was fined around £260,000 by UEFA in July for a minor break-even deficit, and spent £200 million on new players in the summer. Moreover, there are speculations that Man Utd won’t be able to make much of the £70 million it spent on Casemiro, whom they roped in from Real Madrid 16 months ago. The Brazilian has been struggling with form and fitness.
But some Saudi clubs may be interested in the 31-year-old footballer, and may even spend a fortune to have him. And then there are Anthony Martial and Rahael Varane – both are out of contract and have the option to extend their contracts by another 12 months.
Saudi Pro League Clubs
Furthermore, the Saudi Pro League clubs are drawing in big players like Cristiano Ronaldo, Anderson Talisca, Neymar, Roberto Firmino, Marcelo Brozovic and Steven Gerrard, among others. And Al-Ittihad had given its all to bid for Mohamed Salah from Liverpool, but proved unsuccessful.
Premier League clubs, as per ESPN, banked a $311.87 million in transfer fees from the Saudi Pro League this summer. The biggest deal was Ruben Neves’ £47 million move from Wolves to Al-Hilal. The report stated that money received from Saudi teams was almost half of the £560 million total earned by Premier League clubs for outgoing deals this summer.
Izzy Wray, of Deloitte Sports Business Group, said this marks the first time since 2016 that another international league has outspent any of Europe’s big five during a football transfer window, with new players bringing the promise of new fans and partners to strengthen the Saudi Pro League’s prominence.