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The Uruguayan forward will leave La Maquina after multiple disagreements with the executive directors and will accept the offer from Arabian soccer, the best in economic terms for both the club and the player.
Arabian club Al-Nassr FC to buy ‘Cabecita’ Rodríguez
Multiple sources confirmed to ESPN that the Uruguayan striker and his agent are in the process of agreeing on the terms of the transfer to the Saudi Arabian club Al-Nassr FC, which ends a long drama in which "Cabecita" Rodríguez pressured Cruz Azul several times with leaving the team during 2020 and 2021, which is why the Celeste board opted to sell him in this winter market to recover part of the investment the club made in December 2018, when they bought him from Santos Laguna for US$10 million.
Cabecita always wanted to have a higher salary
"He already has his mind in another team. He still has one year left on his contract and, although he has asked to leave several times, at some point he proposed renewing his contract at Cruz Azul for a salary of US$2 million per year, which is an amount that cannot be accepted at the club," said a source to ESPN.
Undergoing player and club paperwork
The transfer of Jonathan Rodríguez from Cruz Azul to Al-Nassr FC of the Saudi Arabian First Division will become official as soon as the terms of payment from the Arab club to the Mexican player are agreed upon, that is, in the next few hours, which is why the player received permission from the Cementero board to not play this Tuesday in the friendly match against Puebla at the high-performance center.
According to ESPN there was also an offer of US$4.5 million from LAFC on the table to buy Jonathan Rodríguez's pass, but even though the Uruguayan player's family liked the idea of living in Los Angeles, "Cabecita" himself decided to accept the offer from Arab soccer because he will earn more than US$2 million a year, 50 percent more than what he earned with La Máquina, where he was the highest-paid player on the team with a salary of US$1.4 million a year.
The transaction between the clubs will be approximately between $6 million and $6.5 million.
According to Transfermarkt, the player is worth 8 million euros.
After all, the player will leave the club for a lower amount than the price it cost. The Uruguayan finally will receive the salary he wished and will play for the Arabian club. Nevertheless, his spot in the Uruguayan national team could be lost because the league where he will join is not that competitive.
However, that will be a decision for the new Uruguayan coach Diego Alonso.
Jonathan Rodriguez achiements at Cruz Azul
The striker arrived at Cruz Azul earlier in 2019 in the winter transfer window from Santos Laguna. The forward helped La Máquina to break the 23-year streak without a title and became champion with Cruz Azul in the 2021 Apertura tournament.
The Uruguayan also helped the club to lift the Campeon de Campeones trophy last July against León, scoring one goal in the final. During his stay at Cruz Azul, the international player scored a total of 50 goals and assisted 12 times.
Even though the player is leaving the club on bad terms with the executive board, the fans will remember his performances for Cruz Azul and the fact that he was a key player to break the 23-year streak without a title.