It was difficult for Al-Ittihad, the Saudi champion, to forfeit the opportunity to sign Karim Benzema, who holds the Golden Ball for the best player in the world, but not all repercussions of the deal may be positive, as it puts the future of Abdul Razzaq Hamdallah, the top scorer in the Saudi League, at stake.
As soon as the Saudi League champion signed yesterday, Tuesday, with Real Madrid’s second top scorer throughout its history, with 354 goals, and after a busy career that spanned 14 seasons, Al-Ittihad club announced that the French striker would wear the number 9 shirt at the expense of the Moroccan scorer, Hamdallah.
– Ittihad Club (@ittihad_en) June 6, 2023
Some fan accounts associated with the Saudi club also began promoting the idea of Hamdallah’s departure, after the arrival of Benzema.
Abdul Razzaq Hamdallah’s departure from Al-Ittihad Club has been confirmed, and Al-Ittihad Club is ready to receive offers to transfer the player.
A year and a half that we will not forget, thank you Abdul Razzaq 💔🙏🏻 pic.twitter.com/BsYsrZmZ93
— amphitheater | Golden (@A1modrj) June 6, 2023
Moroccan Hamdallah was one of the most important offensive weapons of Al-Ittihad club during the last season, and he grabbed the spotlight in the same position as Benzema as an honest spearhead, taking advantage of his great experience as a champion and former scorer of the competition.
Hamdallah, 32, who is 3 years younger than Benzema, scored 21 goals in 26 games and won the title of top scorer in the competition after competing with two of the top scorers Anderson Talisca and Odion Ighalo.
More importantly than the number of goals, Hamdallah was decisive in the big matches, and was one of the main reasons for Al-Ittihad’s return to the podium in the Saudi Professional League for the first time since 2009.
Coronation scenes 🏆
🎙 Hamed Al-Balawi: There is no disagreement between us, and our goal is the interest of the Union pic.twitter.com/3WFcWR4pyw
– Saudi Sports Company SSC (@ssc_sports) June 5, 2023
And after winning the title of top scorer in the Saudi League for the third time, Hamdallah, who scored more than 100 goals in the competition, seemed confident in his capabilities, even with speculation about negotiations between Al-Ittihad and Benzema.
Hamdallah welcomes Benzema
Hamdallah said less than a week ago, “Any player who comes is welcome and can help the team. He is welcome, and we do not have a problem.”
“We are big players and we are used to competing inside and outside the team and we are there for anything,” he added.
🚨🚨🚨 Benzema coming?
Abdul Razzaq Hamdallah: Brother, any player who comes and can help the team is welcome. We do not have a problem. We are great players and we are used to competing inside and outside the team, and we are available for anything.
– ITTI MANIA – Itti Mania (@IttiMania) June 1, 2023
There was no public comment from Hamdallah after Al-Ittihad signed Benzema and the French striker obtained his shirt number, and perhaps his position as well.
But as long as Benzema is intact, it is expected that Hamdallah will lose his position as the main striker, and it seems difficult to change his position in the lineup in light of his lack of speed and skill of the winger, for example.
Hamdallah’s strength is summed up in his correct positioning, his dangerous and intelligent movements in and around the penalty area, and his deadly touches into the opponents’ net.
But it may be unfortunate for the Moroccan striker, who extended his contract with Al-Ittihad until 2025, that these are almost the same strengths as Benzema; This means that it is difficult for them to participate together tactically in the starting line-up.
The coming days will reveal whether Hamdallah will accept a less important role, or will search for another experience, as did the former Cameroonian Vincent Abu Bakr, the former victory striker, last January, who was overthrown by the contract with Cristiano Ronaldo, the historic scorer for Real Madrid and former colleague Benzema.
Until now, no decision has been taken to leave or stay the player “Abdul Razzaq Hamdallah”, while the departure of (Bruno Henrique – Tariq Hamed – Helder Costa) has been confirmed. pic.twitter.com/yFO26g17gQ
– Abdullah Al-Shehri (@biq__) June 7, 2023
– Saudi Trend (@AlTrendAlsaudi) June 4, 2023