Al-Ain attacker Omar Abdulrahman wants a move to the Premier League after he was denied a move to Arsenal in 2013.
The Emirati has been one of best players in Asia for a number of years now, but despite a great deal of hype, he’s yet to make the big move to Europe.
Part of this is down to him failing getting a work permit. Abdulrahman was a target for Arsenal and Manchester City back in 2013, but the moves fell through due to the United Arab Emirates not being high enough in the FIFA rankings.
“I received offers from Nice and Arsenal, but the negotiations fell through,” he said, as reported by The Sun. “I also had a two-week trial with Manchester City in 2013, and nearly joined them. But the Emirates’ FIFA ranking was low, so I could not get registered. I now have offers from Turkish clubs.”
His contract with Al-Ain expires in six months time, and he’s hoping to finally make the move to Europe, where he feels he could emulate Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah.
“It is still my dream to play in Europe. My contract with Al Ain runs out in six months, so it possible for me to go there soon. “Look at Mohamed Salah, and how the whole world talks about him.
“He managed to raise the name of Egypt in the footballing world, and guided them to the World Cup for the first time in 28 years. My aim is to become like him.”
Abdulrahman has made 204 appearances for Al-Ain, scoring 55 and assisting 101 goals. Though he has 53 caps for the UAE, a move to England is still unlikely due to work permit issues.
Arsenal would have certainly moved on from the 26-year-old by now, and will have their eyes set on player who would be obtainable. It’s interesting to think what could have been had been able to sign for the Gunners, however.
If he made the impact Salah is making now, he would have been quite the acquisition.