Officials trying to orchestrate the next wave of talent to move to the Saudi Pro League have identified Tottenham Hotspur forward Richarlison as a more realistic target than one of his teammates, according to a report.
Richarlison has endured his fair share of struggles since Tottenham signed him from Everton in the summer of 2022. He only scored once in the Premier League during his debut season in north London.
His second season with Spurs has now been interrupted by a physical problem, since he has recently required groin surgery.
Whenever he returns, Richarlison may have a decision to make about his future. According to the Daily Telegraph, he has become a target in the Saudi Pro League.
Chiefs in the Middle East have been considering Tottenham captain Son Heung-min as a dream target. But with no chance of Spurs selling him in January, the focus has shifted to Richarlison.
Along with Manchester United outcast Jadon Sancho, Richarlison has become one of the main objectives in the ever-evolving Saudi Pro League for January.
There was already interest being generated there in the summer, but Tottenham did not want to sell Richarlison then after just one season together.
The report has not shared whether or not Tottenham’s stance on Richarlison’s future has changed ahead of a possible new attempt to take him to Saudi Arabia.
Richarlison remains under contract at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium until 2027. However, even before his surgery, Ange Postecoglou was sometimes preferring to pick other players.
Richarlison has made seven starts in the Premier League so far this season, coming on as a substitute in another three games. He has one goal to his name in the competition, as is also the case in the Carabao Cup.
His overall record in Tottenham colours is just five goals from 46 appearances, which pales in comparison to the 53 in 152 he got for Everton before.
Richarlison has a point to prove still
The 26-year-old will be eager to get his career back on track once he is fit again after a difficult few months on and off the pitch.
The fact he has 20 international goals to his name from 48 Brazil caps shows what he can be capable of at a competitive level.
If he was to go to the Saudi Pro League, Richarlison would find himself in the same division as compatriots such as Neymar and Malcom (Al Hilal), Fabinho (Al-Ittihad), Roger Ibanez and Roberto Firmino (Al-Ahli) and Talisca (Al-Nassr).
Whereas other Premier League clubs like Manchester City, Liverpool and Chelsea offloaded players to Saudi Arabia in the summer, Tottenham did not, so Richarlison could make an unprecedented move away from his current club.