Having successfully negotiated his exit, albeit at the cost of abandoning any claim to his wages for the first half of the season in Saudi Arabia with Al-Ettifaq, Jordan Henderson has dominated the headlines for the past week.
He’s not the only ex-Red who has struggled to settle in the Saudi Pro League, though, with Roberto Firmino reportedly unhappy at Al-Ahli. Despite rumours about an exit earlier in the month, though, recent reports claimed he would at least see out the season.
Now, though, there are claims in Spain that despite Saudi reports that he would remain for now, his agent is continuing to actively shop the player around Europe, seeking an exit—likely on loan—for the unhappy player.
Real Madrid are said to have rebuffed such an offering, and Premier League sides including Chelsea, Arsenal, Tottenham, Newcastle, and Brighton all said to have been approached by Firmino’s camp with the player having struggled for playing time of late.
Of the three Liverpool players who joined the Saudi league last summer, then, it seems fair to say that only Fabinho at Al-Ittihad is fully happy with his decision—or at least content enough not to angle for an immediate exit.
The biggest blow to the reputation of the upstart Saudi sportswashing project, though, would be if Karim Benzema—at Al-Ittihad with Fabinho but by all accounts quite unhappy there—is able to force his exit this month.