Ajman hire Tunisian coach Al Jabal; Sharjah sign Brazilian striker Luan

Ajman hire Tunisian coach Al Jabal to replace Abdulqadir and Sharjah bring in the Brazilian striker Luan Michel de Louza.

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Fathi Al Jabal has set his sights on improving Ajman's position in the Arabian Gulf League next season after being named as Abdulwahab Abdulqadir's successor at the club.

Ajman finished 10th in the AGL last season following a poor start, which saw them at the bottom of league table with eight points at the midway mark. They rallied in the second half of the season to avoid relegation, but decided to part ways with their manager of four seasons, Iraq’s Abdulqadir.

Ajman announced Rene Marsiglia, the former Dubai coach, as Abdulqadir’s successor, but the Frenchman had to turn down the job due to his health issues. The club then got in touch with Al Jabal, a native of Tunisia, and now have a deal in place.

Al Jabal, 51, has been working with the Saudi club Al Fateh since 2008, helping them gain promotion to the Saudi Professional League for the first time in 2009 before guiding them to the league and Saudi Super Cup success in 2013. Leading a non-traditional power to achievements of that sort perhaps had special resonance for officials at Ajman, usually considered one of the UAE’s “small” clubs.

Al Jabal, who will be returning to the country on July 15 to take charge, said his goal was to help the team “improve their position in the league and occupy the mid-table”.

Sharjah, meanwhile, have agreed a two-year deal with the Brazilian striker Luan Michel de Louza, 25. He is expected to arrive in the country in the next few days for his medicals before signing a contract.

Usually known by his first name, Luan spent most of two seasons with the French club Toulouse before returning to Brazil in 2011 and spending the past two seasons on loan to Cruzeiro from Palmeiras.

Luan’s teammates at Cruzeiro did not want to see him leave and started an online campaign to urge him to stay, but the striker had decided he wanted to return abroad.

“It will be very different from everything, but I have never been afraid to face new situations or problems,” Luan told media in Brazil. “I have several offers in Brazil, but I have decided to leave. Palmeiras wanted me back and Cruzeiro wanted to hire me, but I believe that it is better I leave for a new experience.

“At Sharjah, my goal will be the same that I have always had in my career: to win and be a champion.”

Luan will replace compatriot Ze Carlos, who has returned home after failing to convince coach Paulo Bonamigo that he warranted another season in the side.


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