Top Footballers  that transferred to Saudi Arabia this summer. On Thursday, the Saudi Pro League’s summer transfer period for 2023 came to an end. A large number of players left prestigious European clubs and leagues for the Middle East.

    It might be said that Cristiano Ronaldo’s signing by Real Madrid and Manchester United was the “statement signing” that ‘motivated’ other athletes to relocate to Saudi Arabia. Ronaldo left Manchester United for a second time in January and then joined Al Nassr.

    Al Nassr, Al Ahli, Al Ittihad, and Al Hilal are the four teams in the league that the Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF) stated it will hold 75% of, with a non-profit controlling 25%, in June.

    The PIF’s successful takeover of Newcastle, in which it holds an 80 percent ownership, resulted in the league’s first high-profile players, including Karim Benzema and Ngolo Kante, joining.

    Saudi League clubs reportedly spent more than €850 million on transfers this summer.


    The following list of notable athletes who were involved in the Saudi transfer deals is presented in no particular order.



    When Neymar paid £200 million to go from Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain in 2017, he became the most expensive footballer in the world. Neymar was slated to return to Barcelona after spending six seasons with the team, but the agreement fell through.

    Neymar signed a two-year contract and completed his £80 million transfer from PSG to Al Hilal on August 15.


    Karim Benzema

    Karim Benzema, a French forward, was one of the well-known players who entered the league at the beginning of the transfer window.

    Despite initially denying rumors that he was considering leaving the Bernabeu, the 35-year-old joined Al Ittihad in June.


    N'golo Kante

    N’golo Kante finished his transfer to Al-Ittihad after recovering from an injury-riddled Chelsea season. Kante returned to the Blues late in the 2022–2023 season, but he was unable to match his “typically” excellent performance, which prevented the squad from improving upon their league-low 12th-place finish. According to reports, he will make almost €100 million with the club.


    Riyadh Mahrez

    Mahrez was a member of the Manchester City team that captured the treble last year, including the Champions League for the first time in the organization’s history.

    The Algerian international played for Leicester City, which captured the 2015 Premier League title. Mahrez paid a £30 million initiation fee to join Al-Ahli, and his annual salary will be £45 million.


    Sadio mane

    After developing a gap with the team’s management, Sadio Mane had a dismal season toward the end of his time at Bayern Munich and was soon rumored to be leaving the squad. Mane decided to accept a contract with Saudi Arabia’s Al-Nassr and now plays alongside seasoned player Cristiano Ronaldo in the club.


    Roberto Firmino 

    Another former Liverpool striker, Roberto Firmino, joined Al-Ahli for free after being on the bench for a greater part of his last season at the club. Firmino will earn £326,000 per week at Al-Ahli.


    Edouard Mendy

    When Graham Potter took charge at Stamford Bridge, Mendy was demoted in the Chelsea hierarchy. As Kepa Arizzabalaga resumed his position between the sticks, the Senegalese goalkeeper was forced to watch from the sidelines. In June, Mendy joined Al-Ahli.


    Jordan Henderson

    As part of the Liverpool exodus to the Saudi League, Jordan Henderson was involved. At El-Ettiqaf, the former Liverpool captain will play with another former Liverpool player, Steven Gerrard.


    Ruben Neves

    Neves, another player involved in the Saudi transfer deal, moved to the league after turning down bids from Barcelona and a few English clubs, which caused quite a stir.


    Kalidou Koulibaly

    The Senegalese star was one of Todd Boehly’s first group of Chelsea recruits. The 30-year-old sealed a transfer to Al Hilal after spending one season at the club.

    The others are Georginio Wijnaldum (Al Ettifaq), Moussa Dembele (Al Ettifaq), Aymeric Laporte (Al Nassr), Marcelo Brozovic (Al Nassr), Sergej Milinkovic-Savic (Al Hilal), Alex Telles (Al Nassr), and Sergej Milinkovic-Savic (Al Hilal).

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