Wolves accepted transfer for captain Ruben Neves to Al-Hilal of Saudi Arabia for a club-record £47 million. After six seasons at Molineux, the 26-year-old midfielder from Portugal exits with one year left on his contract. Neves is the most well-known athlete to recently switch from a European club to Saudi Arabia's Pro League. Karim Benzema departed Real Madrid for Al-Ittihad earlier this month, joining Cristiano Ronaldo who had already joined with Al-Nassr in January.
This week, midfielder N'Golo Kante reached an agreement to leave Chelsea to join his France teammate Karim Benzema at Al-Ittihad. While Portuguese midfielder Bernardo Silva of Manchester City is wanted by Al-Hilal, Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy is close to joining Saudi Pro-League outfit Al Ahli.
Neves claimed at the conclusion of the previous campaign that he was ambitious amid interest from Barcelona, but the La Liga champions were unable to make an acceptable offer, leading Neves to choose Saudi Arabia. Al-Hilal's payment exceeds the £41 million Wolves received from Diogo Jota when he transferred to Liverpool in 2020. Additionally, it dwarfs the reported 18 million euro (£15.4 million) transfer fee that sent Matheus Pereira from West Brom to Al-Hilal in 2021 as the largest transfer fee paid by a Saudi Pro League team.