Jordan Henderson leaves Saudi Arabia for Ajax

Jordan Henderson leaves Saudi Arabia for Ajax

Jordan Henderson, the former Liverpool captain, has left Al-Ettifaq in Saudi Arabia to join Ajax Amsterdam, the Dutch club announced on Thursday.

The 33-year-old England international has signed a two-and-a-half-year deal with Ajax, which runs until June 30, 2026. He had recently agreed to terminate his contract with Al-Ettifaq.

“We wanted an experienced midfielder with leadership qualities,” Ajax coach John van ‘t Schip said in a club statement. “Jordan Henderson is that type of player.”

Henderson was captain of Liverpool when the Reds won their first English Premier League title in 30 years in 2020 and the Champions League the season before.

“His arrival is a huge boost for our team,” van ‘t Schip said. “On and off the pitch, a player of his caliber is important for our many young players.”

Henderson reportedly missed training on Wednesday to travel to Dubai for a medical with Ajax. He had cited the desire to play in Europe for the upcoming European Championship as his reason for leaving Al-Ettifaq.

Henderson joined Al-Ettifaq last summer for a reported fee of €14 million and a salary of up to €816,000 per week. His move to Saudi Arabia was controversial, as he had been a vocal advocate for LGBTQ+ rights.

Al-Ettifaq, which also features French striker Moussa Dembélé and Dutch midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum, is currently in eighth place in the Saudi Arabian Premier League, 28 points behind leader Al-Hilal.

Ajax, meanwhile, is in fifth place in the Dutch Eredivisie after a disappointing start to the season.

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