Former Manchester City and Athletic Bilbao central defender Aymeric Laporte, who is currently among the ranks of Saudi Pro League Al-Nassr, has cited concerns about the lack of professionalism in the middle-east Asian country, where several top players are considering leaving the club at the end of ongoing season.
Aymeric Laporte- former Manchester City stalwart
Aymeric Laporte has been considered one of the greatest defenders who have played for English Premier League side Manchester City. The Spaniard, who had the opportunity to play for French national team owing to his familiar alliances in both countries, has been looked upon as a defensive stalwart in the upcoming days, owing to his exquisite prowess to clear the ball, coupled with his heading abilities in the attacking sector. Having played his role in Manchester City, he went on to join Saudi Pro League outfit Al-Nassr, which also includes Portuguese football legend Cristiano Ronaldo and former Liverpool attacker Sadio Mane among their ranks. But, due to the recent rise of former European greats leaving or expressing concerns about the football structure in Saudi Arabia has divided the football world into splits.
Following former Liverpool skipper Jordan Henderson’s departure from Al-Ettifaq, who are ranking on a mediocre eighth position on the league table, and rumors of former Real Madrid captain Karim Benzema expressing his desire to leave Al-Ittihad has taken center-stage, Laporte has opened up about the sheer lacunae of professional attitude from the middle-east Asian country.
Opens up about his time in Arab
When asked about his lifestyle change in Arabia, Laporte said, “Let’s see, you’re fine… It’s a big change compared to Europe, but in the end it’s all adaptation. They haven’t made it easy for us. In fact, there are many players who are dissatisfied, but hey; we are working on it every day, negotiating so to speak, and to see if it improves a little because this is something new for them too, having European players who have already had a long career. Maybe they are not used to this and have to adapt to a little more seriousness.”
When asked about any particular thing which has taken a toll on him, his response was enough to showcase every detail. He said, “In every sense, but also in everyday life. Life for them… they take everything lightly. The ultimatum you can give them doesn’t matter to them. I mean, they’re really going about their business. You negotiate something and then they don’t accept it after you have signed it. They fight you… It’s a bit of a pain that in Europe I don’t know… Of course, the same thing that they take away from you in that they give you in other ways.”
Asked about comparisons to that of Europe, he was heard saying, “Yes, they take care of us, but not enough for my taste. That is to say, in Europe they pay you a good salary, but they take better care of you. “
He has even threatened to take the same path as Henderson opted for, to cut his losses during his time, as he said, “No, let’s see. At the moment, I haven’t thought about it, but if I’m disappointed in such a short time, you wonder what to do. That moment has not yet arrived, but in the future it could be if this dynamic continues.”
As we have seen in last few days about Henderson, it can also be informed that increased number of players have expressed their concern about the plight of Saudi Arabian football, and if this continues to emerge, then football hierarchy would be treated to an unfortunate set-back.