Saudi Professional League: Al Ahli Jeddah snap up Marseille and Al Ahly target Youcef Belaili

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Al Ahli Jeddah have landed Algeria’s 2019 Africa Cup of Nations star Youcef Belaili in an attempt to correct their worrying start to the campaign.

Belaili, 27, penned a three-year contract once terms were agreed with CAF Champions League holders Esperance de Tunis.

Speculation had been rampant about the winger’s future after he excelled in victory during the AFCON, with links emerging to Ligue 1 giants Marseille and Egypt’s Al Ahly. The King Abdullah Sports City-outfit emphatically ended this talk with their announcement late on Friday evening.

A round-of-16 exit in the 2019 AFC Champions League and opening 1-1 draw with promoted Saudi Professional League side Al Adalah had ramped the pressure up on new coach Branko Ivankovic. The club stated they had “decided to sign two new foreign players” and instantly sell disappointing summer buy Danijel Aleksic in the wake of the latter result.

Belaili has won two CAF CL titles, four Tunisian Ligue Professionnelle 1 trophies and the Tunisian Super Cup in two separate spells at Esperance.

He has netted three times in 13 international caps for The Fennecs.

A two-year doping ban disrupted his career from 2015-17.

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