Hugo Viana admits he could retire if no UAE offers come forward

Barnaby Read 09:30 01/06/2016
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Viana was speaking at adidas' Mercury boot launch.

    Viana, who moved to the UAE in 2013 when signing for Al Ahli from Braga, has not had his contract

    renewed by Wasl.

    But with his family settled in Dubai, the 33-year-old is aiming to stay in the Emirates, even if that means bringing his career to an end.

    “I spoke with the committee of Al Wasl. They will not renew so I do not know what will happen,” Viana told Sport360.

    “If something appears I will listen but if nothing appears I have always had in my mind to finish football early and not to go to 35 or 36. I am 33 now and you never know. My family are very happy here, my kids are adapted to the city so it would be perfect if I could stay here to play or to work.

    “Until now there are no offers, I will take my time and enjoy the family and last weeks of school for the kids. I am 100 per cent thinking about the family for now.”

    Viana’s arrival at Wasl was marred by controversy in 2014. His move from Ahli at the end of the summer transfer window missed its midnight deadline and left the player in limbo for months as the UAE FA rendered his transfer void.

    The deal was eventually ratified and the former Newcastle and Valencia midfielder has since played 37 times for the Cheetahs, who were left disappointed by a sixth-place finish this season.

    Manager Gabriel Calderon was axed before the end of the campaign and now Viana will follow him out of the exit door after failing to add silverware to the 2013/14 AGL title he won with the Red Knights.

    That trophy return has disappointed Viana, who blames Wasl’s late dip in form on fitness issues.

    “From the middle of the season up until the last five games, we had a very good season. Almost throughout that whole time, we were third or fourth. But the end of the season, I’m not really sure what happened,” Viana said.

    “The physical condition was not good for our side and we did not do a good job. We were very sad because we had a very good chance to get to the final of the Arabian Gulf Cup. But the team must forget the past and focus on the future and doing well next year.”

    Whatever the future holds, Viana says he will fondly remember his time in UAE football and also believes the national team has a bright future.

    “It has been a very good experience,” said Viana. “I always wanted to come to a different country and still think it was a good decision from my side.

    “You have great players here and the national team, from when I arrived here to now, have been doing a very good job. If they continue to improve, maybe we can see the UAE at a World Cup in two or six years. They just need to improve their professionalism and the way players concentrate on their job.”