Saudi Arabia attracting marquee gamers to their league isn’t a shock anymore. The truth is, they’ve supplemented these participant additions by additionally attracting big-name managers like Jorge Jesus. The latest appointment of Steven Gerrard was nonetheless stunning although, as he’s a supervisor nonetheless working his method up the ranks and will have made his mark in Europe. So, who does Steven Gerrard handle in Saudi Professional League?
What workforce does Steven Gerrard handle?
Steven Gerrard just lately agreed to grow to be the supervisor of Al Ettifaq, the Saudi Professional League who completed Seventh within the league final summer season.
He took over from Patrice Carteron because the full-time supervisor, with Antonio Cazorla’s brief spell sandwiched between them.
As a workforce, Al Ettifaq have had a reasonably profitable historical past. Based mostly within the area of Dammam in Saudi Arabia, they’re owned by the Ministry of Sports activities themselves.
They’re on the checklist of golf equipment that the Saudi authorities have patronised with their cash, permitting them to draw elite gamers and managers at exorbitant value.
Consequently, Jordan Henderson’s wages of £700k/week have made him flip to Al Ettifaq as effectively.
Al Ettifaq have received the Saudi Professional League two occasions, together with profitable it as soon as whereas going unbeaten the entire season, the primary Saudi workforce to take action in 1982-83.
They then fell on onerous occasions, even getting relegated to the second division. Nonetheless, they acquired promoted to the Professional League after profitable the second division in 2015-16 and haven’t seemed again since.
Gerrard shall be hoping to enhance upon the Seventh-place end final season. Nonetheless, with elevated high quality throughout the league, he’ll want much more reinforcements than simply Jordan Henderson.
Al Ettifaq squad
Not like their rivals like Al Hilal and Al Nassr, who’ve already strengthened themselves by securing European royalty, Al Ettifaq are within the beginning levels of their challenge.
Their present squad is generally made up of Saudi Arabian gamers, with some lesser-known gamers like Sweden’s Robin Quaison and Brazil’s Vitinho including the stardust.
They’ve Amin Younes, the as soon as highly-rated German midfielder, of their ranks however he’s but to be registered.
Jordan Henderson will immediately grow to be probably the most proficient participant within the squad when he joins.
They should strengthen throughout the board if they’re to outlive within the Professional League subsequent season.
It will likely be an uphill job for Gerrard, whose popularity has additionally taken successful after the inauspicious spell at Aston Villa. Unai Emery’s efficiency with the identical squad has additional hit his popularity.
Henderson is a begin, however giving him a £700k/week contract might result in a slippery slope as they might want to match, and even exceed that quantity every time they begin negotiations with one other participant of the identical calibre or higher.
After all, it’s trying like cash isn’t any impediment for state-rolled Saudi golf equipment and that will need to have been a think about Gerrard selecting to affix Al Ettifaq.
Nonetheless, in an more and more aggressive league, he has his work minimize out for him if he desires to keep away from getting a second consecutive failure on his managerial profile.