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Jordan Henderson faces an uncertain future

Jordan Henderson & 6 other superstars who face uncertain futures in Saudi Arabia

A number of superstars made the move to Saudi Arabia in the summer, although several of them are already facing an uncertain future in their new surroundings.

Plenty of Europe’s biggest stars were lured to the Saudi Pro League with highly lucrative contracts, but some of them are already eyeing up their next move.

We’ve taken a closer look at the Saudi Pro League and have identified seven stars who are facing an uncertain future.

Jordan Henderson

Reports have claimed that Henderson and his family have found it difficult to acclimatise to life in Saudi Arabia. The likes of Ajax and Juventus have been eyeing up the former Liverpool captain, although Al-Ettifaq aren’t prepared to let him leave at this stage.

Henderson penned a three-year deal with the Saudi club in the summer and is earning an estimated £660,000 weekly wage according to Capology.

Al-Ettifaq have endured a tough run of form recently, having only won one of their last 12 matches. With dwindling attendances a main talking point, it’s no wonder Henderson is considering his options.

Karim Benzema

Al-Ittihad pushed the boat out to lure Benzema to Saudi Arabia, but the Frenchman has endured a difficult start in his new surroundings.

Despite bagging nine league goals so far, Al-Ittihad have fallen well below expectations and currently sit seventh in the league.

As a result of their troublesome form, Benzema’s future is now up in the air. According to Marca, Benzema won’t take part in their upcoming Dubai training camp which has only added more fuel to the fire.

The former Real Madrid forward is said to be keen on a return to Europe with Manchester United already being linked with the 36-year-old.

Al Ittihad's Karim Benzema greets fans during his team match against Al Raed in the Saudi Professional League, in Buraidah, Saudi Arabia, Monday, Aug. 14, 2023.

READ: The 6 players that left Real Madrid in the summer – & how they’ve fared since

Roberto Firmino

After scoring a hat-trick on his Al-Ahli debut, things have rapidly gone downhill for Firmino. The Brazilian has failed to score in his last 16 league matches and is already being linked with a move away.

According to talkSPORT, clubs from England, Turkey and fellow Saudi clubs are interested in taking Firmino off Al-Ahli’s hands in January.

Neymar

The Brazilian superstar has hardly kicked a ball for Al-Hilal and yet there is already some speculation regarding his future.

Prior to his ACL injury, it was reported that Neymar didn’t see eye-to-eye with head coach Jorge Jesus who recently came out with some frosty quotes.

“Cristiano Ronaldo has more passion for football and that’s why he puts it as a priority. Neymar has more passion for other things and puts those other things, which is his private life, first,” Jesus said via AS.

Back in September, Brazilian journalist Ademir Quintino claimed that Neymar is keen on a return to Santos in 2025.

Having recently been relegated from the Brazilian top flight, Santos would need to ensure they are promoted this year if they are to stand any chance of landing Neymar’s signature. His wage demands would likely be a stumbling block too.

Jota

Despite joining Al-Ittihad for a club-record fee, Jota hasn’t been registered for their league campaign due to a cap on foreign players.

The 24-year-old seems more than likely to depart in January and we sure would love to see him in the Premier League.

Jota in action for Al-Ittihad.

READ: Spurs’ January wildcard is a mullet maestro desperate to avenge his Saudi nightmare

Gabri Veiga

The 21-year-old raised eyebrows in the summer as he penned a lucrative deal with Al-Ahli, despite interest from some of Europe’s top clubs.

Fast forward a few months and Veiga is already said to be considering his options. According to Fichajes, Veiga is ‘not entirely happy’ with his situation in Saudi with Manchester City said to be interested.

Ruben Neves

It didn’t take long until the Portuguese midfielder was being linked with a Premier League return. Newcastle were reportedly keen on the 26-year-old, although Neves has stressed that he is happy in Saudi Arabia.

“There was Newcastle interest before I came here but I’m really happy here, my family’s really happy, so I’m having a great time,” Neves told reporters.

With Al-Hilal currently sitting at the top of the league, Neves seems likely to stay put for the time being, but his long-term future in Saudi Arabia could still be up for debate.


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