Besiktas midfielder Matias Emilio Delgado to join Al Jazira

The Argentine attacking midfielder is to join Al Jazira in the Pro League news media in Turkey reports.

Matias Emilio Delgado, an Argentine attacking midfielder with championship credentials in Switzerland and Turkey on his CV, is to join Al Jazira in the Pro League, news media in Turkey reported yesterday. Jazira are spending ?2.25 million (Dh10.5m) to purchase Delgado from Besiktas, the Istanbul club, according to the website superliganews.com. A source at Jazira told The National that reports of Delgado joining the Abu Dhabi side were premature because the player had not completed a medical and the club had not agreed to a contract. The source indicated no deal could be complete before Wednesday, which is two days before Jazira opens the 2010/11 Pro League season with a home match against Al Nasr.

Delgado's arrival would give Jazira their maximum complement of three international players. He would join Bare, the Brazilian striker and Toni, the Ivorian forward. Delgado, 27, spent three seasons with FC Basle of the Swiss Super League. He helped Basle to domestic championships in 2003/04 and 2004/05 and was the Swiss Footballer of the Year for the 2005/06 season, during which he scored 19 goals.

He fetched a transfer fee reported in the region of Dh23.9m when Besiktas bought him from Basle in June 2006. Delgado was captain of Besiktas's 2008/09 Turkish Super League-winning side. However, he missed all of the 2009/10 season through injury and was booed by fans during Besiktas's 2-0 Super League defeat on Sunday, according to todayszaman.com. Under Abel Braga, the Brazilian coach, Jazira lost only once in 20 league matches last season but finished second to Al Wahda.

Jazira have never won a league championship. poberjuerge@thenational.ae