European Clubs Call for Investigations Into Chelsea and Wolves Over Saudi Arabia Dealings

European Clubs Call for Investigations Into Chelsea and Wolves Over Saudi Arabia Dealings

Martin Moses
June 20, 2023 at 12:48 PM
  • The increased demand for Chelsea and Wolves players from Saudi Arabia has raised eyebrows
  • Both clubs have a need to balance their books to conform with Financial Fair Play regulations
  • Chelsea has spent over €600 million in the last two transfer windows under new ownership

European clubs have called for an audit and investigations into the increased likelihood of Chelsea and Wolverhampton Wanderers players leaving for Saudi Arabia.

The Middle Eastern nation has become a good hunting ground for elite football players following Cristiano Ronaldo's blockbuster move to Al-Nassr in January.

Todd Boehly, Chelsea, Behdad Eghbali, Saudi Arabia, Hakim Ziyech, Wolves, Romelu Lukaku
Chelsea owners make their way across the pitch after the UEFA Champions League quarterfinal second leg match between Chelsea FC and Real Madrid at Stamford Bridge on April 18, 2023. Photo by Clive Rose
Source: Getty Images

A number of other players have already joined other clubs from the same country, with Karim Benzema sealing a move to Al-Ittihad.

Chelsea ace, N'Golo Kante, is understood to be on his way to the same club as well while Ronaldo's long-time rival, Lionel Messi, rejected an offer from Al-Hilal.

Chelsea, Wolves and FFP

There have are now concerns that Chelsea and Wolverhampton Wanderers are using the lofty offers from the Middle East nation to balance out their books. The Telegraph reports that top clubs are questioning the 'sudden interest' in players from these clubs.

The Blues specifically have spent more than €600 million in the first two transfer windows, with more arrivals expected this summer once Mauricio Pochettino takes over. This has created an urgent need for the club to trim down its bloated squad.

The likes of Hakim Ziyech, Edouard Mendy, Romelu Lukaku, and Kante himself have already received interest from Saudi Arabia, with discussions currently ongoing.

Wolves will also benefit massively should the €47mil offer for their captain, Ruben Neves, go through, as reported by Daily Mail.

A source told the publication that both clubs are using Saudi Arabia to get away with any breaching of Financial Fair Play rules.

"Watch clubs use Saudi this summer across Europe as a get out of FFP jail free card. It becomes even murkier should Saudi Arabia have an investment interest in both the selling and buying club."

Chelsea's spending in the last two windows saw them hop onto UEFA's watchlist, with the club now under scrutiny over how they will confine with FFP - a regulation that Saudi Arabia is not bound to.

The need to sell their players has been made 'easy' by the Gulf nation's desire to pay the top dollar for stars.

How Chelsea avoided FFP sanctions

Sports Brief has previously reported that multiple questions have been raised about Chelsea's willingness to spend huge wads of cash on their targets.

The Blues have often been blasted for paying excess money for otherwise moderate players, including forking out close to €88mil for Mykhailo Mudryk.

Chelsea then paid €120mil to sign Enzo Fernandez from Benfica - a British record fee - as the Boehly ownership took over from Roman Abramovich.

Authors
Martin Moses photo
Martin Moses
Editor- EPL I Serie A
Tags
TransfersEnglish Premier League - EPL