Soccer News

Neymar Officially Joins Saudi Club Al-Hilal From Paris Saint-Germain

Neymar has signed a two-year deal with Al Hilal, who have also made attempts to sign Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe from PSG this summer. Neymar will earn six times the amount he was on at PSG.

Sources close to PSG, who have been open to selling Neymar for the past three windows, say the club are set to receive up to £86.3m for a player that cost them a world-record £200m from Barcelona in 2017.

At 31, Neymar was not considered a key player by new PSG head coach Luis Enrique and the club had been open to selling him in order to focus on forming a younger, hungrier team.

Earlier in this transfer window, Messi opted to join Inter Miami, while Mbappe is now set to stay at PSG. The France captain was frozen out by the club after refusing to sign a new contract, meaning he could leave for free at the end of the season.

Mbappe insisted he would not leave PSG this summer, despite their desire to sell him, but he has now returned to first-team training after apparently indicating his commitment to the club.

PSG accepted a world-record £258m bid from Al Hilal last month but Mbappe rejected the one-year move to Saudi Arabia.

President and CEO of Paris Saint-Germain Nasser Al-Khelaifi on Neymar’s departure:

It is always difficult to say goodbye to an amazing player like Neymar, one of the best players in the world.

I will never forget the day he arrived at Paris Saint-Germain, and what he has contributed to our club and our project over the last six years.

We had a great moment and Neymar will always be a big part of our history.

I would like to thank Neymar and his family. We wish Neymar all the very best for the future and his next adventure.”

Neymar joined PSG from Barcelona in 2017 for a world record fee of 222 million euros ($242m), a few weeks before they recruited Kylian Mbappe. He scored 118 goals in 173 matches in six injury-plagued seasons.

He won five Ligue 1 titles and three French Cups but was on the losing side as PSG were beaten by Bayern Munich in the 2020 Champions League final.

His time at the club has frequently been blighted by injury and he is no longer considered a key player in coach Luis Enrique’s squad, with the likes of 22-year-old Portugal striker Goncalo Ramos changing the profile of the team.

Al Hilal, the most successful club in Saudi Arabia and Asia, has won 66 trophies and holds the record for the highest number of league and Asian Champions League titles, with 18 and four respectively.

Strengthening the squad is a priority for the Riyadh-based club after the Saudi Public Investment Fund announced in June an investment and privatisation project for sports clubs involving league champions Al-Ittihad, Al-Ahli, Al-Nassr, and Al Hilal.