Jordan Henderson may never receive his Al-Ettifaq wages, according to a new report. The former Liverpool captain made a massive mistake.
Jordan Henderson shocked football in the summer when he pushed for a transfer from Liverpool to Al-Ettifaq. Here was the Reds' captain - and a champion of social rights - leaving to join a sports-washing campaign in Saudi Arabia.
And all for around £350,000 per week tax-free. The move tanked Henderson's reputation in football, going from a hugely respected figure in the game to someone seen as a hypocritical, money-hungry liar. Not everyone saw him that way, of course, but it's easy to understand why many (LGBTQ+ groups, in particular) were hurt by the move.
Henderson essentially sold his reputation and goodwill for £350k per week. Only, it now seems he didn't. He actually sold it for free.
UK laws consider you a resident for tax purposes if you spend at least 90 days there during a tax year (April to March). If you qualify, you must pay tax on any earnings, even if those earnings were abroad. That's not the case if there's a tax treaty between the UK and the country you're earning in, but there isn't with Saudi Arabia.
Thus Henderson deferred his wages from Al-Ettifaq into the next calendar year, per the Telegraph. He was always going to be over the 90-day mark for this year, so if he wanted them tax-free, he needed to be paid next year. Then he simply needed to remain out fo the UK for all but 89 days of the 2024/25 tax year.
That means that up to now, Henderson has not received a penny from Al-Ettifaq. He has now agreed to terminate his contract, too, as he no longer wishes to play in Saudi Arabia - a contract with Ajax is reportedly waiting for him.
The Telegraph now claims that the former Liverpool captain does not expect to ever receive those wages. He's now relying on Al-Ettifaq being nice enough to pay for the six months of football even after the termination of the contract. If they don't, Henderson must go through the Saudi legal system to get them.
After all of this, it's now incredibly easy to call this one of the worst transfers in history from a player's perspective. Henderson gave up his £200k-a-week contract at Liverpool to essentially play for free in Saudi Arabia for six months before signing a significantly reduced deal at Ajax.