England midfielder Henderson joins Al-Ettifaq on three-year deal



Fri, 28 Jul 2023 - 11:06 GMT


Fri, 28 Jul 2023 - 11:06 GMT

England's Jordan Henderson celebrates after the match REUTERS/Darrin Zammit Lupi/File Photo

England's Jordan Henderson celebrates after the match REUTERS/Darrin Zammit Lupi/File Photo

(Reuters) - England midfielder Jordan Henderson has joined Saudi Pro League side Al-Ettifaq from Liverpool on a three-year deal, both clubs said on Thursday.


British media reported that Al-Ettifaq would pay about 12 million pounds ($15.55 million) plus add-ons for the former Liverpool captain, who will end his 12-year stay at Anfield.


The 33-year-old, who will wear the number 10 shirt, is expected to receive a weekly salary of around 700,000 pounds, according to British media.


Henderson bid farewell to Liverpool fans in a video posted on social media on Wednesday.


"It's hard to put these last 12 years into words and it's even harder to say goodbye. I will always be a Red. Until the day I die. Thank you for everything. You'll never walk alone," he said in an Instagram post.


Henderson will be reunited at Al-Ettifaq with former Liverpool team mate Steven Gerrard, who was appointed as the manager on a three-year contract earlier this month.


Henderson arrived at Liverpool in 2011 from Championship (second-tier) side Sunderland and was made captain following Gerrard's move to Los Angeles Galaxy in 2015.


Henderson played nearly 500 games for the Reds in all competitions, winning the Premier League, Champions League, FA Cup, two League Cups, the Club World Cup and UEFA Super Cup.


Henderson's move to Saudi Arabia, where homosexuality is illegal, has made headlines as he is a vocal advocate for LGBTQ+ rights and a supporter of Stonewall's Rainbow Laces campaign.


"Once again, our existence and the concept of 'allyship' towards us is feeble in comparison to a vast pay check," 3LionsPride, a group representing England fans, stated before Henderson's announcement was made official.


"The ability to say the right words when they are easy and abandon them when money talks or times get tough is exactly why the term 'ally' is outdated and ineffective."


Al-Ettifaq finished seventh in the top-tier Saudi Pro League last season.




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