Aymeric Laporte, Spain and Manchester City defender, is set to join forces with Saudi Pro League side Al-Nassr, and is confirmed to play with the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Sadio Mane in the Gulf country. He is poised to embark a new journey at Saudi , with a three-year contract on the line.
Aymeric Laporte joins Al-Nassr
Aymeric Laporte has been one of the elite stoppers with Pep Guardiola’s team, over the past years. Having joined the club in 2018 from Athletic Bilbao, he has been a major force in Pep’s defensive setup, contributing to 13 major trophies, including the coveted Champions League this season. He will be remembered for his exploits in the backline, which involved extensive clearance and clutch goals, thus becoming one of Pep’s most trustworthy soldiers to bet on.
He has decided to join Saudi Pro League side Al-Nassr, which has emerged as one of the powerhouses of Saudi football, with the likes of superstars like Cristiano Ronaldo, Sadio Mane and Marcelo Brozovic, in their repertoire. Saudi Pro League has joined elite forces with top European clubs as they have “lured” several top class players in their League, which involves Neymar, Mahrez, Fabinho and Jordan Henderson in their roster. With Laporte’s signing, Al-Nassr have a stacked-up squad which will be able to compete with the top leagues in the world, already winning the Arab Club Champions Cup few weeks ago.
He will be sporting the Saudi jersey for a period of three years, as City might have to bear the brunt of losing one more of their top stars in the same window, along with Gundogan and Mahrez, who have decided to ply their trade in Barcelona and Saudi side Al-Ahli, respectively.
Laporte shared a sweet message
After his signing for Al-Nassr was made official by the club, Laporte took to social media to express his gratitude and respect for his previous team. He was heard saying, “Dear Cityzens, today I wanted to share a story with you. It has lasted for five and a half unforgettable years. Plenty of memories that I will keep forever close to my heart. It’s always easy to think of the good ones: the trophies, the wins, the goals, the tackles, and the big fights in the Premier League. But I will also remember the bad ones: the injuries and being sidelined, the defeats, and the mistakes I may have made.” In his speech, he had reminisced the sweet memories he has had at the Etihad, coupled with the bad times, when he was forced to sit out a game owing to injuries.
He seemed to have fallen down the pecking order for Pep who preferred the defensive combination of Nathan Ake, Ruben Dias and Manuel Akanji last season, with Laporte filling in during someone’s absence. Injuries seem to have dogged his progress last season, as he was sidelined for the majority of the season, thus compelling Pep to go out with a different combination.
Latest star in the Gulf
With Laporte’s signing, Al-Nassr will boast of their star-studded team with Ronaldo and Mane at the frontal throng, coupled with Brozovic and Alex Telles in the defensive and midfield set-up. With the AFC Champions League to commence from the next month, they could be one of the heavyweights to compete in the tournament, as they would be utilizing the experience and expertise of the top European stars they have brought on deck this season. For City, the Spaniard has amassed more than 10 goals in 180 appearances, making him one of the most sought after stars in the Premier League, owing to his striking capabilities.