Saudi Arabia's Growing Influence

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Post by Casciavit Tue Jun 06, 2023 10:17 pm

Ronaldo in January

Benzema yesterday

Kante next

Potentially Messi

The top 4 teams in the league are now 75% owned by their sovereign wealth fund. $20 billion investment is coming.

Players are getting +100m a year salaries. They're serious.

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Post by El Gunner Tue Jun 06, 2023 11:43 pm

PGA Tour also finally caved in from their moral high ground and merged with the Saudi-funded LIV Golf
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Post by titosantill Wed Jun 07, 2023 2:16 am

signing old ass retirees is not growing influence. pele went to play football in the states in like 1972 or so and yet the mls is still the mls. batistuta, effenberg, hierro moved to qatar in the mid 2000s and yet nobody has ever said "dang i cant wait to tune into the Qatari league" (unless you're from Qatar). now if they can sign an mbappe or haaland next year, that's what will move the needle. if u sign guys in their prime that other european teams want.

or forget that, if they become like some of the South American leagues and start exporting players youthful players in droves to other parts of the world or we start seeing their players on the international stage....i think that's how Zamalek in Egypt gained some popularity in the early 00s.

i like that they can sign these old players though, it doesnt help as far as influence, but it helps grow the sport in their countries and kids get to see them up close (some might feel a bit disillusioned since some of these old dudes would have lost a yard or two). i also like athletes being able to make paper as they get older cos its really not a long term career
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Post by sportsczy Wed Jun 07, 2023 3:50 am

Well the money is going to attract... just like Russian league was spending a ton about 10 years ago.  But at least that league was part of UEFA so there was the champion's league.  Got the likes of Hulk, Witself, Malcom, etc. in their prime.

I think the Saudi league is going to be similar where you'll get the odd big signing and some retirees.  

I like it though.   The passion and enthusiasm for football is real.   It also exposes people to other cultures, which is always good to foster understanding.   Breaks prejudices and misconceptions.

Just not enough media exposure and low competition.  Not much of a threat imo.

Edit: Chinese league was going crazy a few years ago too by offering big contracts.
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Post by Casciavit Wed Jun 07, 2023 4:16 am

The difference is that the Saudi government is absolutely backing this unlike the Chinese one.
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Post by Vibe Wed Jun 07, 2023 7:42 am

We've seen it happen before, usually runs out of steam and a couple footballers get filthy rich.

But these are the Saudies, so who knows, miracles happen. Ignazio Abate was the best player in the world for a month.
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Post by Myesyats Wed Jun 07, 2023 7:45 am

Kante for 100m per year who struggles to get a game in edgewise Laughing I can only imagine his befuddlement when heard of the offer

This will give some exposure to the league because it forces us to talk about it, but for it to become serious it will take far more than that including decades of grassroots movements and serious academy work also provided you have people who know what they're doing

It's a start, but if they want to become a top 5 league within 5 years then I have bad news for them, they paid CR to say that but I'm not sure they actually believe that. Heritage cant be buy
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Post by Vibe Wed Jun 07, 2023 7:48 am

Myesyats wrote: Heritage cant be buy


But heritage can be buy, as proven by your profile pic and that Mourinho interview.
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Post by Myesyats Wed Jun 07, 2023 10:53 am

Fair dinkum! There's really not much to say as of now tbf, lets revisit this shit once they start landing players in their prime and have a solid base of homegrown players who are sought after around the world. We're talking about an entire league 'ere hmm
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Post by Nivash Wed Jun 07, 2023 1:43 pm

PSG buying players in their prime and competing in the UCL hasn't changed perceptions of the league being full of farmers

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Post by Warrior Wed Jun 07, 2023 1:58 pm

There is a world cup 2030 bid incoming. About KSA League becoming the #1 league in the world... it's unclear how they can dethrone UEFA which is also rich as hell

They bought Newcastle with the intention to become a perennial top PL club. That's a pawn they can use to buy players in their prime and compete in the best leagues. Similar as PSG becoming Qatar's gateway to elite football although Ligue 1 was not the best place to invest in retrospect.

Because of Liv golf i've read a lot the word sportswashing and i agree it's what they do but i also think the boycott arguments against Saudi Arabia are quite feeble and ironic especially when coming from americans. In fact every government in their right mind will use sports as lever. Sports are a huge business and you can buy influence, visibility, corruption and nobody will bat an eye because they care more about who wins the next game.
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Post by BarcaLearning Wed Jun 07, 2023 4:48 pm

Saudis have always been this rich right? So why now, why they didnt do all this b4? Its due to planning to bid to host WC? Razz

As others have said above, we have seen similar things happen in the past... n think Saudi league is just to small n level too low to raise much interest tbh...

Im more selfish n think this is not good, simply cos 1) I prolly wont watch the league, not even highlights, 2) It steals some WC players we would otherwise watch in the European games Razz

But yea for the players themselves, dream come true n money set for life n good for football development for that region I guess.
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Post by BarrileteCosmico Wed Jun 07, 2023 5:43 pm

It's kind of sad, no? If these were liberal democratic countries their voters would absolutely reject wasting money like this. But it's a kingdom where a few dozen people need new toys.
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Post by El Gunner Wed Jun 07, 2023 6:10 pm

told this girl on Instagram late last year i wish i was born a Saudi Prince and she blocked me
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Post by sportsczy Wed Jun 07, 2023 7:23 pm

It's actually improved so much since the change of regime.  The new ruler is abolishing a lot of the nonsense, such as the religious police. Women's rights has improved tremendously (they couldn't even drive until 2018).

This is part of the PR campaign to get people to see Saudi Arabia in a different light.  The investment is to bring attention to the positive sides of the country.

It's not random or frivolous.
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Post by Firenze Mon Jun 19, 2023 5:13 pm

They're signing so many players yet no offers for our scrubs, legit saving Chelsea - allegedly saudi clubs are signing Ziyech, Koulibaly, Mendy, Kante and more ffs

Al Hilal just dropped 47m on Ruben Neves and offering him 500K a week

they're working on a deal for Bernardo Silva atm too
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Post by Myesyats Mon Jun 19, 2023 6:34 pm

That chelsea stuff seems sus.... very convenient, getting rid of all deadweight in one swoop.

From the Saudi POV this seems more like a whitewashing attempt to improve the chances of their WC bid rather than a genuine effort to transform the Saudi league into a top league.

I must commend them for luring away Neves though, he was dangerously close to Barca.
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