Former Real Madrid star James Rodriguez leaves Everton to join Qatari club Al Rayyan

James Rodriguez has left Everton to join Qatari club Al Rayyan for an undisclosed fee.

The Colombian international travelled to the Middle East at the weekend to seal a move away from Goodison Park after failing to play a game under new manager Rafael Benitez. He now has to undergo a rigorous medical and agree the final details of his contract.

The former Real Madrid midfielder, 30, became the highest-paid player in Everton’s history when he joined the club on a two-year deal in 2020 under then-manager Carlo Ancelotti.

He scored six goals in 26 appearances for the Toffees in his debut season in English football, but his future at the club was thrown into doubt following Ancelotti’s shock return to Real Madrid in June.

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. He decided to leave Everton to join Al Rayyan, who are managed by former France and Manchester United defender Laurent Blanc.