January 5, 2024

McIlroy speaks out on whether he’d join LIV after ‘regret’ comments | Golf | Sport

Rory McIlroy has admitted he has “set his stall out” when asked about the possibility of him ever joining LIV Golf. McIlroy has been one of the players who has been a supporter of the PGA Tour amid the feud with the Saudi-funded breakaway league.

It was announced on June 6 last year that plans had been made for a merger between the PGA tour and LIV Golf. An initial deadline for the framework to be fully agreed was set for December 31, but the PGA Tour confirmed before the New Year that an extension was being worked on.

A number of the world’s best golfers have signed up to join LIV Golf over the past two years. The most recent was reigning Masters champion Jon Rahm, who agreed to a £450 million deal with the tour that is financed by the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia (PIF).

McIlroy opened up on the conversations he’s had in the past over the possibility of joining LIV Golf. The Northern Irishman also explained why his previous attitude towards the breakaway league means he’s unlikely to ever make a switch.

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“It’s the guarantee part of it,” said McIlroy on the ‘Stick to Football’ podcast. “LIV are offering you a contract, so you come up and play golf for five or six years, and we’ll pay you whatever it is per year, plus you’re going to compete for prize money as well.

“I don’t know the exact finances, but the numbers being touted for Jon Rahm are upwards of $500 million. That’s what the numbers are.”

McIlroy added: “I’ve never had an offer [from LIV Golf]. I didn’t engage with it, and I think at this point, I’ve set my stall out. For the last two years I’ve been trying to fight the good fight and I’ve played well the last couple of years and I’m in a good spot, but it’s not my job at the end of the day. My job is to go out there and try to shoot the lowest score possible.”

McIlroy also expressed his regret for his reaction to some players joining LIV Golf over the past couple of years. The four-time major champion explained why is more sympathetic to players who decide to join the Saudi-funded league for financial reasons.

“I think at this point, I was maybe a little judgmental of the guys who went to LIV Golf at the start, and I think it was a bit of a mistake on my part because I now realise that not everyone is in my position or in Tiger Woods’ position,” said McIlroy.

“We all turn professional to make a living playing the sports that we do, and I think that’s what I realised over the last two years. I can’t judge people for making that decision, so if I regret anything, it was probably being too judgmental at the start.”


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