‘I will be able to help my whole family to live well’ - Koulibaly admits money motivated Saudi Arabi move

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FOOTBALL ‘I will be able to help my whole family to live well’ - Koulibaly admits money motivated Saudi Arabi move

Joel Omotto 15:30 - 28.06.2023

The Senegal international has revealed why he left Chelsea for Al Hila in the big spending Saudi league

Kalidou Koulibaly has admitted that his transfer to Saudi Arabia was motivated by money as he will now be able to support "at least 15 villages" in Senegal as a result.

The 32-year-old defender, who made 32 appearances for Premier League side Chelsea last season, was officially presented as an Al Hilal player last weekend.

After much speculation surrounding his future, the Senegal international has signed a three-year contract with the Saudi Pro League side worth a reported £300,000 per-week.

He will join former Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves in Riyadh.

Before signing for the Saudi club, Koulibaly opened up on the reasons behind his move to Al Hilal during a lengthy interview with Italian outlet Corriere dello Sport.

"I am happy because I am a Muslim and I am arriving in the right country," he said.

"And I'm thrilled to be one of the first to land in an evolving league. I hope to help Saudi Arabia and Al-Hilal write a new sporting history. And then there is this very important contract."

The 32-year-old defender, who will join up with his teammates in the coming days, also spoke about the impact of his reported £300,000 per-week wage.

He says the life-changing amount of money will not only help his entire family, but those who live in villages around Senegal.

"I will be able to help my whole family to live well, from my parents to my cousins, and above all support the social activities of my Capitaine du Coeur association in Senegal," he added.

"We started with the construction of a pediatric clinic in the village of Ngano, where my parents were born and married.

"My brothers and I fulfilled a dream. Last week we went to Dakar and we have laid the foundation stone. it will help at least fifteen villages, many people who at the moment have to travel 50 minutes by road if they need a hospital.

"Now the state has to support us with doctors, but I have many other ideas. We will invest a lot for Senegal and then for West Africa.

"We will help young people. They are the future of the country and of the world."

Koulibaly later explained that a lack of first-team minutes at Chelsea last season played a part in his departure.

"I had no guarantees to get regular playing time [at Chelsea]. I was always professional but I don't like to sit on the bench doing nothing," he said.

"I prefer a place where I am wanted and at the centre of the project and can be an example for young players. The Premier League is fantastic and there are great players."