Saudi Arabia to land ANOTHER star name - as key target launches scathing attack: report

Cristiano Ronaldo of Al-Nassr Club celebrates with :Sadio Mane of Al Nassr Club after scoring his teams first goal during the Saudi Pro League match between Al- Nassr and Al-Ahli at King Saud University Stadium on September 22, 2023 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Saudi Arabia is targeting a legendary figure in football, who just launched a scathing attack on their former side. 

Since signing Cristiano Ronaldo just under 12 months ago, the Middle Eastern nation has been making waves in the footballing world. A host of star names have all moved to the Saudi Pro League in recent times, from players to managers alike. 

And now, Paolo Maldini is the latest person linked with a move to Saudi Arabia, with Al-Ittihad - the club Karim Benzema, N'Golo Kante and Fabinho all play for - wanting to make the legendary Italian one of their directors. 

: Paolo Maldini, AC Milan First Team Technical Director smiles prior to the UEFA Champions League semi-final second leg match between FC Internazionale and AC Milan at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on May 16, 2023 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Emmanuele Ciancaglini/Ciancaphoto Studio/Getty Images)

Maldini is being targeted by the Saudi Pro League (Image credit: Getty Images)

According to Fabrizio Romano, Al-Ittihad have been chasing the services of Maldini ever since he left AC Milan as technical director in the summer. The link has gathered traction, though, after Maldini launched a scathing attack on the club he spent 25 years as a professional at and a further five years upstairs. 

The 55-year-old has accused Milan of failing to show respect for their identity and history, in his first interview since being sacked.

"There are people who are passing through institutions like Milan, in the world of football clubs with an international profile, and who have no real respect for their identity and their history," Maldini told La Reppublica.

JEDDAH, SAUDI ARABIA - OCTOBER 6: Karim Benzema of Al-Ittihad before the Saudi Pro League match between Al-Ittihad and Al-Ahli at King Abdullah Sports City on October 6, 2023 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. (Photo by Khalid Alhaj/MB Media/Getty Images)

Benzema's Al-Ittihad want to bring Maldini to the club (Image credit: Getty Images)

"I have never had signing power even for loans. However, to be accused of not wanting to share [power], I don't find it at all fair."

Maldini's comments were centred on owner Gerry Cardinale, with the Italian suggesting that the reasons given for being fired were “a little weak".

While looking towards his future, Maldini then indicates that Saudi Arabia could prove an enticing project.

“There are limited alternatives to Milan. I’d never work for another Italian club, only a foreign team at a high level. I like to win and to build (projects). Saudi? Who knows. It might be an idea.”

More Saudi Arabia stories 

Newcastle United will look to Saudi Arabia for players in January, after the Premier League failed to pass a vote blocking sides from conducting loans between teams under the same ownership

From Cristiano Ronaldo to Newcastle, here's how Saudi Arabia is taking over world football

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