The Arabian Gulf League’s summer transfer market continued to heat up on Wednesday with moves to Al Ain for Al Jazira midfielder Mohamed Jamal and confirmation of Uruguayan battler Nicolas Milesi’s season-long loan switch to Al Wahda from Al Dhafra.
Jamal, 25, was a key performer when the Pride of Abu Dhabi lifted the 2016/17 title and has only been denied his UAE debut by a succession of poorly timed injuries. His arrival on a free transfer represents another coup for the nation’s most-decorated club, following on from their recent €5.5 million capture of Al Wasl’s prolific Brazilian striker Caio Canedo.
“When you are given you the opportunity to belong to one of the best clubs in the region and the continent, you have to be well aware that a big responsibility lies in front of you,” said the former Manchester City trainee, who went goalless in 50 AGL appearances for Jazira and has inked a contract until July 2023.
Milesi, 26, represented a landmark capture for Dhafra once his trophy laden, two-year stint at Saudi Arabia’s Al Hilal came to an end in July 2018. The uncapped Uruguayan – who notched once in 21 top-flight displays – replaces Moroccan misfit Murad Batna in the 2019 AFC Champions League knockouts entrants’ four-player foreign quota.
The Clarets are also expected to imminently tie up the arrival of Carlitos, 28, from Poland’s Legia Warsaw. The well-travelled Spanish forward registered on 16 occasions in 37 matches last season.
This surprising move has placed the future of Brazilian attacker Leonardo in serious doubt. The August 2018 addition from Al Ahli Jeddah notched 27 times in 35 run-outs last term, putting him as the eight-goal leading marksman in the 2019 ACL.
“Al Wahda has signed with the Uruguayan midfielder Nicolas Milesi as a loan for a single season from Al Dhafra,” Wahda tweeted. “Al Wahda administration council wishes all the best and the success for the player with the team.”
Both clubs have new coaches to lead rebuilds after they finished far behind runaway champions Sharjah.
VVV-Venlo’s Maurice Steijn was chosen as replacement for fellow Dutchman Henk ten Cate. The 64-year-old retired after leading Wahda to third.
Fourth-placed Al Ain selected Croatia’s Ivan Leko to succeed Juan Carlos Garrido. He claimed the 2017/18 Jupiler Pro League with Belgium’s Club Brugge.
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