Yet another big name from the top echelons of the European game has packed up and is set to head off to Saudi Arabia this summer after Brazilian star Fabinho has completed his medical ahead of a move to Roshn Saudi League giants Al-Ittihad.
The 29-year-old Brazilian international and key Liverpool midfield fulcrum will arrive at King Abdullah Sports City on a three-year deal at Al-Ahli’s rivals ahead of coming head-to-head with former Reds clubmate and international compatriot Roberto Firmino, who also choose to move to the Gulf Kingdom this summer.
Though the final accent marks are still to be put in place before his move can be made official, his impending move to Al-Ittihad is yet another statement signing made by the top clubs in the Saudi football pyramid, with the club doing well to prize him away from Anfield despite having three years left on his current term sheet.
Fabinho becomes the sixth signing of the summer under boss Nuno Espiríto Santo, following the key additions of Karim Benzema, N’Golo Kanté, and Jota, as well as two domestic moves for Sultan Al-Farhan and Saudi international Saleh Jamaan Al-Amri.
Liverpool is now faced with the near-impossible task of replacing Fabinho via the summer market, with the Reds having already been rumored to be keen on Real Madrid’s Aurélien Tchouaméni.
Fabinho was once described by Jürgen Klopp as a player who “...saves our lives. He gives us opportunities to play the way we play, together with the two center-halves, so we can really focus on offensive stuff. He’s a massive player for us.”
On the basis of that, the Campinas-born midfielder was vital for Liverpool during his five seasons on Merseyside while helping the club bag six major honors, including a Premier League title and a memorable Champions League win.