HomeSportGreenwood move to Saudi would be 'very surprising'

Greenwood move to Saudi would be ‘very surprising’


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Mason Greenwood has not played for Manchester United since January 2022Mason Greenwood potentially moving to a club in Saudi Arabia would be “very surprising”, a senior league source has told BBC Sport.Saudi teams have spent lavishly on big-name signings this summer and Greenwood has been discussed internally.However, the league feels it would not be the right move currently.The acquisition of players in Saudi Arabia works differently to elsewhere, with the league doing the bidding or deals for players before assigning which club they will play for.Last year also saw the inaugural season of the Saudi Women’s Premier League.Women’s football in Saudi is “breaking records,” the first female vice-president of the Saudi Arabian Football Federation (Saff) Lamia Bahaian said on Friday.external-linkThe Saff recorded an 86% rise in registered female players last year, while the number of women’s clubs nationally also rose by 56%.The source added: “The government have created a women’s league, which is about to start its second season on 11 October. That is also an important difference because it is being seen as for the whole community.”That is an incredible change, women’s football was totally frowned upon; now there is a national team with a Fifa ranking.”Women are playing without head coverings and there are male fans in the stands, that is a big cultural shift.”What happened with Greenwood?Monday Night Club: Adam Crafton says Man Utd’s decision on Greenwood became ‘a PR nightmare’Greenwood was arrested in January 2022 following allegations surrounding material which was published online.Charges against the 21-year-old England international, including attempted rape and assault, were dropped on 2 February 2023.United said in a statement on Monday: “All those involved, including Mason, recognise the difficulties with him recommencing his career at Manchester United.”It has therefore been mutually agreed that it would be most appropriate for him to do so away from Old Trafford, and we will now work with Mason to achieve that outcome.”Last week, a group of female United supporters protested outside Old Trafford before the Wolves game about his potential return, and said they wanted the club to “demonstrate a zero-tolerance approach” towards violence against women.Female Fans Against Greenwood’s Return put out a lengthy statement to say Greenwood’s reintegration would tell them “as women, that we don’t matter”.Greenwood said on Monday he had “made mistakes”, but he added: “I did not do the things I was accused of.”

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