Can you believe that as a footballer, you could earn as much as $4,000 a week playing in Saudi Arabia’s third division? This is the fourth level in their football system. And it’s not just the $4,000 weekly, which adds up to about $200,000 a year, but the deal also includes a free car and house. I’ve talked to some people in Saudi Arabia and I’m going to share the answer in this post. If you want to aim big, you can even go for the big boys in the top divisions. In this article, we will talk about the top football clubs in Saudi Arabia looking for players. Let’s first of all talk about the league structure.
Saud Arabia League Structure
Let me explain the structure of the Saudi Arabian football system. At the top, tier 1, is the Saudi Pro League with 18 clubs across the country. This includes clubs such as Al Nassr and Al Hilal, where players like Ronaldo and Neymar play. Then comes the second tier, the First Division League, also with 18 clubs spread across the country.
The third tier is the Second Division League, which has 32 clubs split into two groups: Group A and Group B, each with 16 clubs. The fourth tier, often referred to in the media as the Saudi Third Division, consists of 40 clubs divided into four groups: A, B, C, and D, with ten clubs each. Finally, there’s the fifth tier, the Saudi Fourth Division, which involves smaller regional teams.
In the Saudi Third Division, there are 40 clubs, but only the top ones offer big contracts to a few players. So, in the third division, while these big contracts exist, they are limited to a few individuals. This creates a situation where countless amateur and professional players worldwide are competing for these contracts. They are attracted by the chance to play in a league with a not-so-high skill level but with big money rewards.
Football Clubs in Saudi Arabia Looking for Players
So, we are actually going to talk about 20 clubs in total, including the best, top tier clubs in Saudi Arabia where you have the Ronaldos and then the lower third division where you can easily sign a contract. Let’s begin with the 3rd division because it’s easier here than at the top-flight football.
Saudi 3rd Division Looking for Players
1. Al-Diriyah Club
Based in Riyadh, Al-Diriyah Club is actively one of the football clubs in Saudi Arabia looking for players. They are particularly interested in versatile midfielders and defenders. They also offer football trials in Saudi Arabia to find the best talents.
2. MAl-Rawdhah Club
In Jeddah, we have the Al-Rawdhah Club. This club is looking for good players and they have a reputation for growing young talent too. They are on the lookout for players, especially strikers and wingers. You can join this club and showcase your skills in the Saudi 3rd Division.
3. Najran SC
Najran has a passionate fan base and is currently one of the football clubs in Saudi Arabia looking for players. They need goalkeepers and central defenders.
4. Al-Khaleej Club
Based in Saihat, Al-Khaleej Club is looking for fresh talent in Saudi football. The club is interested in young, dynamic players in all positions, with midfield creativity.
5. Al-Orobah FC
We also have Al-Orobah FC in search of foreign players to add depth to their squad. They need attacking midfielders and full-backs. You can also get football trials in Saudi Arabia here.
6. Al-Bukayriyah FC
If you would like to move to Al Qassim Province, you can join Al-Bukayriyah FC. They need young, energetic forwards and central midfielders.
7. Al-Jabalain FC
At number 7, we have Al-Jabalain FC, one of the football clubs in Saudi Arabia looking for players. They value players with good tactical understanding and discipline.
8. Al-Ansar FC
If you would like to be based in Medina, Al-Ansar FC is also looking to add depth to their squad, especially in the attacking and central midfield positions. The club is known for its attacking style of play.
9. Al-Arabi Al-Saudi Club
Located in Unaizah, Al-Arabi Al-Saudi Club is in search of players, particularly in the winger and defensive midfielder roles. They need quick, skillful play for their fast-paced football style.
10. Al-Watani Club
From Tabuk, Al-Watani Club is looking for new talent, particularly strikers and central defenders.
Next, let’s talk about the top tier division clubs where you can get football trials in Saudi Arabia and eventually a contract. It is actually harder to find a contract here because they really are looking for big names to strengthen the league currently.
Best Football Clubs in Saudi Arabia Looking for Players
1. Al-Hilal Football Club
As a dominant force in the Saudi Professional League (SPL), Al-Hilal has a rich history, including multiple SPL titles and AFC Champions League victories. This football club in Saudi Arabia is looking for players with top talent and is always on the lookout to bolster their squad. The club has acquired Ruben Neves from Wolverhampton Wanderers.
2. Al-Ittihad Football Club
Another powerhouse in the SPL, Al-Ittihad has a storied rivalry with Al-Hilal. This club has successfully signed N’Golo Kante, a former Chelsea player known for his exceptional skills in both the Premier League and Champions League.
3. Al-Nassr Football Club
If you have what it takes to play with Ronaldo, then Al-Nassr is one of the football clubs in Saudi Arabia looking for players. Home to the legendary Cristiano Ronaldo, Al-Nassr is a formidable team in the SPL.
4. Al-Shabab Football Club
Al-Shabab is another club in Saudi Arabia that often looks for players. They have really good team performance and standings in the SPL.
5. Al-Ahli Jeddah Club
Al-Ahli Jeddah is another club you can play for in Saudi Arabia. This club has brought in several high-profile players. Franck Kessie, after a stint at AC Milan and a brief period at Barcelona, joined Al Ahli, Allan Saint-Maximin, from Newcastle, and Riyad Mahrez from Manchester City.
A club that has shown its capability in the Saudi Professional League, Al-Faisaly often looks to strengthen its squad with new talents to improve its league standings and perform consistently.
Al-Fateh is another club that is likely to be in the market for new players to enhance their team dynamics and competitiveness in the league.
Al-Raed is a football club in Saudi Arabia looking for players. They currently need skilled players to help them climb higher up in the league.
As a club participating in the Saudi Professional League, Al-Taawoun is known to look for opportunities to strengthen their team with new signings, aiming to better their performances in the league and cup competitions.
This club is another team that often looks to recruit new talents, aiming to enhance their squad strength and make a significant mark in the league.
What is the Average Salary of a Football Player in Saudi Arabia?
Let’s compare Saudi Arabia with Germany’s third tier football. In Germany, players usually earn about 50,000 Euros annually, which is way less. However, the football level in Germany is much higher than in Saudi Arabia’s third division. After the top league in Saudi Arabia, the Saudi Pro League spent a lot of money signing famous players such as Ronaldo, Neymar, Benzema, and others. Saudi Arabia wants to use this buzz to improve their lower leagues. They are trying to attract players from around the world to raise the quality of these leagues.
We all know about the top players with amazing experience in European football. They’re earning between 100 to 200 million dollars a year with incredible contracts. It’s really astonishing. These are special cases. Their fame, their brand, and their achievements in football justify such high earnings in Saudi Arabia’s view. Then there’s the next level of players who have also been successful in Europe. They earn about 10 to 50 million dollars a year. Players like Mahrez, Fabinho, Koulibaly, Brozovic – they get really impressive contracts too.
In the top division, things are different, but as you go down to the second, third, and fourth divisions, teams can only have up to 4 foreign players, and this depends on the league. I’ve spoken with some contacts in Saudi Arabia, and they confirmed that those headlines about contracts offering $3,000 to $4,000 a week. So, this will total $200,000 a year for you.
However, these are only for the top clubs in the third division, and they are specifically for those limited foreign player spots.
So, if you are an international player with a lot of experience, one of these lower-tier clubs might want you. They’ll offer a great contract to play in a league where the overall skill level isn’t that high. But the rest of the team will mostly consist of Saudi nationals and athletes from other African and Arab countries, who aren’t earning nearly as much.
In the levels between the third division and the top division of Saudi Arabian football, you’ll see a pattern. There are some well-known players and coaches with really good contracts, but these are just a few cases in each team.
For example, in the second tier, Robbie Fowler was hired as the manager of Al-Qaedicia, and it’s rumored he’s making a couple of million a year. So, a few famous names, because of their past success in football, get incredible contracts. However, most of the team members don’t have such high-paying contracts.
How Many Foreign Players Are There in Saudi Team?
But what’s often overlooked is that in the top division of Saudi Arabian football, there’s a limit of 8 foreign players per team. This means, aside from those 8 spots and big contracts, the rest of the team is mostly local players. Their salaries range from the national average to a couple of million dollars a year, depending on the club.
How Do I Contact Saudi Football Club?
Football is all about connections. The top clubs in the Saudi Third Division, which offer these contracts, have a network of coaches, scouts, agents, and players globally. They use this network to find a few international players with a lot of experience to offer these contracts. These players are expected to come in and significantly impact the season, being key players on the team.
If you are not part of this network, your chances of getting one of these contracts are almost none. However, ‘almost none’ isn’t the same as ‘none.’ There are still steps you can take, and here’s why it’s worth trying: Saudi Arabia is pouring a lot of money into football and sports. This investment means the entire Middle East region, including countries like the UAE and Qatar, will likely start to compete in a similar fashion.
In the next 5 to 10 years, you are likely to see more player opportunities, better contracts, and facilities in Middle Eastern football. Here are some steps you can take:
1. Start expanding your network right now
A good tool for this is LinkedIn, which many people undervalue. I’m currently doing this myself. For example, I recently connected with someone from the management team at Al Nassr, where Ronaldo plays. I’m planning a trip to Riyadh in Saudi Arabia this December. My plan is to meet with the connections I’ve made and will make on LinkedIn, like sporting directors, management staff, business figures in football, and players. We’ll meet for coffee and chat.
2. Create a Professional Profile
On LinkedIn, make sure you have a professional profile. Then, search for terms like ‘Saudi Arabia football,’ ‘Al Nassr,’ or other clubs. This will show you a list of football professionals working in various clubs and leagues. Start connecting with them, introduce yourself, and begin building relationships.
There are many ways to build your network and connections, and that’s a topic for another post. If you are interested, let me know. But for now, I just wanted to answer the big question everyone’s been asking and encourage you to start making connections in the Middle East.
3. Get Involved in Middle Eastern football market
So, it is possible to land a contract that pays $4,000 a week in the Saudi third division Yes, it is but it can be tough. We are talking about just a handful of contracts with thousands of players worldwide trying to get them. Even though it’s tough, I still recommend getting involved in the Middle Eastern football market. It’s a move that could pay off in the long run. In the next few years, there will likely be more opportunities in football, not just for players but for coaches and other roles in the industry.
4. Be proactive in expanding your football network
Remember, luck happens when preparation meets opportunity. What you can always control is how well you prepare. So, ask yourself, how ready are you? Take action based on that.
5. Start Reaching Out to Saudi Arabian Football Clubs
So, I’m just going to give you contacts of some of the Saudi Arabian clubs you can contact right now. For example:
1. Al-Hilal Saudi Club
- +966 11 431 2222
2. Al-Diriyah Club
- Email: email@example.com
- Phone: +966 11 8292888
3. Najran SC
- Phone: +966 (38) 648289
- Website: www.najranclub.com
These are just 3 examples. You can reach out to more of them. You just have to search for the contact of the specific Saudi Arabia club. You can also request them using the comment section.
So, we have been able to look at 20 football clubs in Saudi Arabia looking for players. These clubs won’t just sign you; they need to be sure that they are making the right investment. This is why it really helps to build a strong football portfolio. If you found this post helpful and informative, and you have any questions about football in Saudi Arabia, don’t hesitate to use the comment section.
Read Also: How to Contact Football Clubs for Trials