Paris St-Germain has struck an agreement with Al-Hilal of the Saudi Pro League to sell Brazilian forward Neymar for approximately 90 million euros (£77.6 million), plus additional add-ons. This deal comes after Neymar’s successful stint at PSG, where he netted goals in their pre-season friendly against Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors.
The 31-year-old’s transfer to Al-Hilal is still contingent on him completing a medical examination and finalizing all necessary documents. Neymar’s move from PSG, where he joined in 2017 for a record fee of 222 million euros, aligns with the club’s shift away from the “Galacticos” approach, focusing on high-value signings.
Left out of PSG’s recent match against Lorient, Neymar was no longer in coach Luis Enrique’s future plans. The forward’s departure also aligns with PSG’s strategic transition, which was underscored by Lionel Messi’s exit earlier in the summer.
With a prior annual earning of 25 million euros (£21.6 million) at PSG, Neymar is set to make an astounding 150 million euros (£129.2 million) a year in Saudi Arabia, a sixfold increase.
During his tenure in Paris, Neymar made 173 appearances, aiding PSG in winning 13 trophies, such as five Ligue 1 championships, and reaching the 2020 Champions League final. Nevertheless, his time with PSG was also marked by recurrent ankle injuries.
Having had surgery in March, he missed the remainder of the season and only resumed training in July. He was also sidelined for key international matches, including two of Brazil’s games at the 2022 World Cup and the 2019 Copa America due to injuries.
News of Neymar’s agreement comes hot on the heels of PSG’s reintegration of Kylian Mbappe into first-team training, following positive contract negotiations. Despite his desire to join Real Madrid, Mbappe might now extend his contract with PSG, and was also absent from the squad in the Lorient match.
This summer has seen remarkable spending by Saudi clubs, emphasizing the league’s ambition to be among the world’s elite competitions in the coming years. Numerous renowned players, including Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema, N’Golo Kante, and others, have made the move to Saudi Arabia. Manchester City’s manager, Pep Guardiola, acknowledged that the Saudi league’s financial strength has significantly altered the market landscape.
Analysts consider Neymar’s move to be another high-profile signing for the Saudi Pro League, one that PSG is likely relieved to have occurred. The shift away from the ‘Galacticos’ model and Neymar’s substantial wage off their books is a significant step towards PSG meeting Financial Fair Play requirements.
While injuries may suggest that Neymar’s peak days are behind him, the deal is lucrative for him and continues to place the Saudi Pro League in the limelight as a destination for the sport’s biggest names. The magic of players like Neymar, even in fleeting moments, promises to make the league an exciting spectacle for fans.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Neymar transfer
What is the agreed transfer fee for Neymar’s move from Paris St-Germain to Al-Hilal?
The transfer fee for Neymar’s move to Al-Hilal is approximately 90 million euros (£77.6 million), plus additional add-ons.
Who are some other high-profile players that have moved to the Saudi Pro League?
Some other high-profile players that have moved to the Saudi Pro League include Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema, N’Golo Kante, Jordan Henderson, Ruben Neves, Sadio Mane, and Roberto Firmino.
Why was Neymar left out of PSG’s match against Lorient?
Neymar was left out of PSG’s match against Lorient as he was not part of coach Luis Enrique’s plans for the new season and was in the process of being transferred.
How much will Neymar earn at Al-Hilal compared to his earnings at PSG?
Neymar will reportedly be paid 150 million euros (£129.2m) a year at Al-Hilal, six times the amount he earned at PSG, where he was understood to be making 25 million euros (£21.6 million) annually.
What has been the impact of Neymar’s injuries on his career?
Neymar’s time at PSG and his international play have been significantly impacted by ankle injuries. He has missed key games, including two of Brazil’s matches at the 2022 World Cup, the 2019 Copa America, and several weeks in 2021 due to similar injuries.
How does Neymar’s transfer align with PSG’s recent strategic shifts?
Neymar’s transfer is in line with PSG’s strategy of moving away from the ‘Galacticos’ era of signing high-profile players for big fees and wages. His exit, along with Messi’s departure earlier, reflects a change in the club’s approach to focus on Financial Fair Play obligations.
What does Neymar’s move signify for the Saudi Pro League?
Neymar’s transfer to Al-Hilal underlines the Saudi Pro League’s ambition to be one of the top competitions in the world. It continues the trend of attracting big names and reflects the league’s financial capability to change the market dynamics.