Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Who are the Premier League stars that could still be heading to Saudi Arabia over the next couple of days?

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While the Premier League might have once again smashed their summer transfer record as England’s elite spent over £2billion combined, it has been Saudi Arabia that has stolen many of the headlines.

Embarking on what has been almost a global takeover since PIF took control of four Pro League clubs back in June, the Middle Eastern giants have continued to shatter a string of financial records over the past couple of months.

Along with recruiting reigning Ballon d’Or winner Karim Benzema, many were left stunned to see Brazilian superstar Neymar arrive in Saudi following his departure from French icons PSG.

Reportedly offering wage packets that are up to 10x more than players are earning at their current European-based clubs, the Premier League have also seen a host of their heavy hitters cash in on the new-found finances in the Middle East.

Along with Chelsea’s N’Golo Kante and Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves, the now-former Manchester City duo of Riyad Mahrez and Aymeric Laporte have also completed their own respective moves to the Pro League.

With Saudi Arabia’s summer transfer window not due to controversially slam shut on September 7th, we have taken a look at a handful of Premier League superstars that have still been linked with a blockbuster move to the Middle East.

Mohamed Salah – Liverpool

While Saudi Arabia might have snapped up the likes of Benzema and Kante this summer, there is no doubt that Mohamed Salah’s potential arrival to the Middle East would be considered a remarkable swoop.

Although Liverpool might have made it abundantly clear that their attacking icon is not for sale, that has not stopped the continued speculation that the 31-year-old could complete an historic move before the September 7th deadline.

Despite ESPN reporting last weekend that Jurgen Klopp’s side rejected an initial offer of £150million from Al-Ittihad, it appears that the former Premier League champions are bracing themselves for another blockbuster offer to test their resolve.

The Daily Mail suggested on Tuesday that a Saudi Arabian delegation has travelled to England to continue dialogue over a new bid that could be worth a record-breaking £200million. Likewise, The Mail’s report also states that Al-Ittihad have received concrete feedback that Salah himself would be open to a move.

While Liverpool fans would be heartbroken to see their attacking history-maker leave Anfield before Thursday’s deadline, the Reds have a major decision on their hands.

Pablo Fornals – West Ham

While Pablo Fornals might have played a crucial role as West Ham were crowned Europa Conference League champions over the summer, there has been continued speculation that the Spanish international could be on his way out of the London Stadium.

While the Hammers might have the option to extend Fornals’ current deal by a further 12 months, the former Villarreal starlet has officially entered the final 12 months of his deal.

Despite still being a firm favourite with West Ham manager David Moyes, the six-cap international has made just a single Premier League start so far this season and is reportedly frustrated by a lack of regular first-team action on either side of the summer interva.

Football Insider reported over the weekend that a number of Saudi Pro League clubs have already registered their interest in the 27-year-old and are all monitoring Fornals’ situation over the next couple of days.

Although the versatile midfielder might still remain a real fan favourite in east London, it has been suggested that Moyes’ men could be tempted to accept a bid in the region of £28million.

Jamaal Lascelles – Newcastle

Still unable to earn a spot in Newcastle’s starting XI despite Sven Botman sustaining an ankle injury last month, Jamaal Lascelles almost finds his career at a crossroads after free-falling his way out of Eddie Howe’s first-team plans at St. James’ Park.

Only making a brief 17-minute cameo appearance against Brighton during the final stage of the Magpies’ 3-1 defeat, the 29-year-old has quickly slipped down Howe’s defensive pecking order.

While the one-time Nottingham Forest starlet might still remain as Newcastle’s club captain, Lascelles has made just eight Premier League appearances continuing on from last season.

Now in the final 12 months of his current deal at St. James’ Park, there is no signs of an exertion on the cards and it hasn’t been rulled out by the Newcastle hierarchy that the one-time England U21 international could be on his way out of the club before Thursday’s Saudi deadline.

With TEAMtalk suggesting over the weekend that Pro League outfit Al-Shabab have added Lascelles to their summer wishlist, it is believed that Newcastle are keen on cashing in on their skipper.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Dunstan


Formerly of The Independent, Tom has spent the past six years as one of our senior writers and betting experts. Alongside working with numerous publications from across the globe, Tom also graduated from the University of Falmouth in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Digital Media.
Spending almost the past decade working in countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada, he has also spent time featuring in sports radio. Tom can be followed on Instagram - @iamtomdunstan

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