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Kalidou Koulibaly completes transfer from Chelsea to Al Hilal

Kalidou Koulibaly has completed his transfer from Chelsea to Al Hilal.
Kalidou Koulibaly has completed his transfer from Chelsea to Al Hilal.

Senegal captain Kalidou Koulibaly joined Al-Hilal from Chelsea on Sunday, becoming the latest high-profile player to relocate to Saudi Arabia.

Koulibaly joined the Blues from Napoli last year for a reported £33 million ($42 million).

However, in the Premier League, the 32-year-old struggled as Chelsea finished 12th, their lowest league finish since 1994.

“Kalidou Koulibaly has left Chelsea after signing a permanent contract with Saudi Professional League club Al-Hilal,” Chelsea said in a statement.

“We would like to thank Kalidou for his contributions on and off the pitch during his time at Stamford Bridge and wish him well in his future career.”

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The Saudi Pro League, backed by the country’s sovereign wealth fund, is luring big names from the major European leagues with the promise of huge salaries.

The trend began with Cristiano Ronaldo’s January transfer to Al Nassr.

His former Real Madrid teammate Karim Benzema and Chelsea’s French World Cup winner N’Golo Kante have both joined Al-Ittihad.

Chelsea could benefit even more from the Saudi investment.

Goalkeeper Edouard Mendy is reportedly on his way to Al Ahli, while Moroccan winger Hakim Ziyech is on his way to Al Nassr.

After spending over £500 million on new signings in the previous 12 months, the English club needs to sell players before the end of the month in order to comply with financial fair play regulations.

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