Brazilian soccer star Neymar is set to join Al Hilal football club, the latest multimillion-dollar addition to the country’s rapidly expanding sporting ambitions, according to Saudi state media.

Neymar has signed a two-season contract that includes participation in the 2025 FIFA Club World Cup in the United States, state-run TV channel AlEkhbariya reported on social media. It did not disclose financial terms. Officials from the football club could not immediately be reached for comment.

Neymar joins the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema among superstars who have already signed for the Saudi club. The Saudi professional rugby league has struck a deal this month to broadcast games in 130 territories for a fee that is four times higher than last season’s total rights revenue, according to a person familiar with the matter. explain last week. The government wants to quadruple the league’s annual revenue to $480 million by 2030.

Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, which manages nearly $800 billion in assets, has recently taken a bigger role in football leagues, acquiring majority stakes in four of its biggest clubs, including Al-Hilal. State-owned oil company Aramco took over another club at the same time.

The wealth fund, known as PIF, is also leading a consortium to buy Newcastle United for more than 300 million pounds ($380 million) in 2021.the fund is considering Another top European football club was acquired, a person familiar with the matter said last month. Saudi Arabia is also exploring a joint bid to host the 2030 World Cup.

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