James Rodriguez is yet to play a game for Everton since Rafa Benitez's arrival; the former Real Madrid midfielder had an option to move to Portugal during the transfer window but a deal couldn't be agreed with Porto
Monday 20 September 2021 09:52, UK
Everton’s James Rodriguez is in talks with a club in Qatar about a potential move to the Middle East.
The former Real Madrid midfielder is yet to play a game since the arrival of Rafa Benitez as manager.
The 2014 World Cup Golden Boot winner had an option to move to Portugal during the transfer window but a deal could not be agreed with Porto.
The official line from the club was that Rodriguez was in Benitez's plans 'until August 31', but Qatar could prove to be an escape route with the transfer window open until September 30.
James has used streaming service Twitch to provide his followers with updates on his future, which has angered many supporters.
In late July on his future: "I don't know what's going to happen. I don't know – I don't know where I'm going to play. You know that in football and in life you don't know anything, but all I know is that I've been training hard, preparing well, training for myself and that's it. It's complicated. [I will play] wherever I'm wanted. Someone has to be at a place they're wanted."
Ahead of the Southampton game on August 14: “There is a game on Saturday then, but I don't know, I don't think I'll play. Anything can happen here at the end of the month, football always changes fast.”
On the eve of Everton's game at Leeds on August 21: “I will start training on Monday, I think. On the weekend I will not play, I don’t even know who Everton is playing, can you please tell me? I think it is away because the past was here at home.”
Shortly afterwards, he added: “Ah, against Leeds they play, away from home, against [Marcelo] Bielsa, a difficult game, let’s see what happens, hopefully they win.”
Saturday, September 11: “I am physically fine. Don’t believe everything they say. I am training well, I feel good and prepared for what will happen to me and what is coming.”
The 30-year-old arrived at Goodison Park on a free transfer in September 2020, reuniting for a third time with then-manager Carlo Ancelotti.
He signed a two-year deal, with an option of a third, and became the highest-paid player in Everton's history.