Saudi transfers: De Bruyne targeted by colossal £2bn war chest

After an enormous transfer splurge last summer, Saudi Arabia’s clubs have been given a colossal £2bn to spend on attracting the world’s best talent.

Saudi transfers: de Bruyne is a target
A Saudi transfer move for Kevin De Bruyne is being rumoured- Photo by Icon Sport

With Mohamed Salah likely to stay at Liverpool, despite having just a year left on his contract, the Saudi Arabia’s top flight is now eyeing an ambitious approach for Manchester City’s Kevin de Bruyne.

Kevin de Bruyne: the biggest of all Saudi transfers?

After a lengthy injury layoff, Kevin de Bruyne has been back to his magnificent best for Manchester City. The 32-year-old is scoring or assisting at an astonishing rate of 1.19 per 90 minutes this season.

De Bruyne has been one of the best midfielders in the world for his nine year stay in Manchester, delivering in the biggest moments. However, with his contract expiring in summer 2025, the Belgian is starting to attract interest from those with deep pockets.

The City star is a target for Saudi Arabia’s ambitious footballing project. The gulf state could easily double his £375,000 per week wages. De Bruyne would be the biggest coup yet for the Pro League. 

Neymar joined Al Hilal last summer – Photo by Icon Sport

Though Neymar and Cristiano Ronaldo are arguably bigger stars, both had a severe lack of European suitors. The same surely cannot be said of de Bruyne.

Manchester City have no plans to sell de Bruyne, but there is a belief in Saudi Arabia, that an offer of £100m plus bonuses could pique City's attention.

Luka Modric is wanted in Saudi Arabia – Photo by Icon Sport

Who else is being targeted?

Kevin De Bruyne is not the only world class player the Saudis have in their sights.

According to ESPN journalist Ben Jacobs, they will also make approaches for veteran midfielder Luka Modric and Manchester United trio Casemiro, Raphael Varane and Aaron Wan-Bissaka.

Atletico Madrid’s Alvaro Morata and Chelsea outcast Romelu Lukaku and more are also being looked into.

This heavy investment in the Pro League comes as part of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 project, which is hoped to modernise and diversify the culture and economy of the oil-rich state, ahead of it hosting the 2034 FIFA World Cup.

William Evans is a football and politics fanatic. A first-class graduate of UEA's Broadcast and Digital Journalism MA course, he also achieved a first class degree in politics and media studies during his time at UEA.