Footballer Karim Benzema says the opportunity to live in Saudi Arabia, a majority Muslim country, was a motivating factor in his move to Al Ittihad.
The 35-year-old is a practicing Muslim and completed his move from Real Madrid to Al Ittihad on Tuesday after receiving a lucrative offer from the Saudi Pro League champions.
“I’m Muslim and it’s a Muslim country. I’ve always wanted to live there. I’ve already been to Saudi Arabia and I feel good about it,” said Benzema. “To me it’s where I want to be… I hope for my new club, what I’ll be able to bring is my football and most importantly to be able to win titles.”
Apart from living in a Muslim country, Benzema will also earn a staggering £643 million in three years with Saudi Pro League club Al-Ittihad. His daily earning is approximately £471,000, an eye-watering to say the least.
The 2022 Ballon d’Or winner left Real Madrid as the team’s all-time second-highest scorer behind Cristiano Ronaldo. Since his 2009 move from Olympique Lyon, he scored 354 goals and won 25 trophies for Los Blancos, including five UEFA Champions League titles.