McIlroy’s Ex-Agent Says Player May Be Weighing Nearly $1B Deal To Join LIV Golf

Europe's Rory Mcilroy celebrates after putting on the 15th green during their morning Foursomes match at the Ryder Cup golf tournament at the Marco Simone Golf Club in Guidonia Montecelio, Italy, Saturday, Sept. 30, 2023. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Former world No. 1 golfer Rory McIlroy has recently hinted at a softened approach towards LIV Golf, after taking a prominent stand against the new golf series funded by the Saudi Public Investment Fund.

According to Andrew “Chubby” Chandler, McIlroy’s former agent, despite being a vocal critic and acting as a leading figure for the PGA Tour during the standoff, McIlroy has shown signs that could be interpreted as openness to embracing LIV Golf. Chandler speculates that McIlroy could be lured to LIV by a potential $950 million signing bonus.

In an interview with Bunkered, Chandler pointed out McIlroy’s capability for reevaluation. “Rory is of the ilk that he’ll say something because he likes to have an opinion but he’s quite happy to apologize for it,” Chandler said.

In recent developments, McIlroy, aged 34, was reluctant to support the ostracizing of players who chose to join LIV Golf and has advocated for unity between the two tours to ensure the best competition fields. This is a significant shift away from earlier statements made by the Northern Irishman, where he criticized fellow players who joined LIV Golf for what he termed as “duplicitous” motivations, alluding to the ethical controversies surrounding the source of LIV’s fiscal backing.

McIlroy has also clashed with LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman but has appeared to move past the intense exchange that contributed to the rift within professional golf circles. His changing stance comes in the wake of the PGA Tour announcing its intention to collaborate with the Saudi Public Investment Fund. McIlroy had previously described his role in the dispute as feeling like a “sacrificial lamb.”