While Arsenal fans are expecting to see an expensive signing coming their way, it seems the club is busy making minor adjustments as well, or only, with UAE star Omar Abdulrahman being positioned to sign with the club if he impresses in the trials that’s set up for him.
According to the Mirror, there’s a chance that the 21-year old already has a deal in principle, which means a trial might be just a formality. He was close to signing with Manchester City, but it seems that a work permit and national team rank issues got in the way a year ago after impressing in a trial and friendly matches.
A year has passed, and City haven’t approached the Al Ain player again, which gives Arsenal the opportunity to try and sign the young starlet, who played for the United Arab Emirates in the London Olympics last summer, and also has 16 appearances for the national team, scoring three goals.
An attacking midfielder who tends to move around a lot and find himself on the left wing especially, Abdulrahman has been his entire career with Al Ain, scoring 21 goals and adding 24 assists in 57 matches for the team, leading them to consecutive league titles over the last couple of seasons, playing next to Asamoah Gyan last season.
How much of a chance does he have to be meaningful part of Arsenal’s squad next season? It’s hard to make the assessment of player’s talents when he spends most of his time in a much inferior league, but at the age of 20 he already seemed good enough to play some part in the Manchester City squad, which means he should be good enough to do well for Arsenal as well. Arsene Wenger’s eye for talent isn’t what it used to be, but Abdulrahman isn’t a complete unknown.
In terms of cost, he’s valued at £1.3 million, which means that a slightly higher offer, unless he has a lessened European release clause, should be enough for Al Ain to give him the go ahead.