Al Wahda interested in midfielder Valdivia

Al Wahda interested in midfielder Valdivia

Former Al Ain star could make a successful return to the UAE

By James Jose - Senior Reporter

Published: Thu 25 Jun 2015, 2:08 PM

Last updated: Wed 8 Jul 2015, 3:12 PM

Chile midfielder Jorge Valdivia (left) and Bolivia’s midfielder Alejandro Chumacero vie for the ball during their 2015 Copa America match in Santiago on Friday. — AFP

Abu Dhabi — Former Al Ain playmaker Jorge Valdivia could make a successful return to the UAE this summer with Al Wahda said to be showing interest in the Chilean international.

The 31-year-old attacking midfielder, nicknamed ‘El Mago’ (The Magician), had plied his trade with Al Ain for two seasons and also captained them before returning to Brazilian club Palmeiras.

Valdivia was set to make a comeback last summer after Al Fujairah had launched an ambitious bid. But the move was shrouded in a bit of controversy and fell apart.

But now, it seems Al Wahda, who finished fourth in the Arabian Gulf League last season, heavily linked to the player, according to the Arabic media.

They reported through their sources that ‘The Clarets’ had begun negotiations with Valdivia and his representatives and were successful. What remains is a medical and the signing of a formal contract, it has been reported.

Valdivia is currently involved in the Copa America where he has linked up with Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez and Juventus’ Arturo Vidal. Chile are the hosts of the tournament.

Arabic media reported that Valdivia had asked for the signing to be postponed until the end of the tournament.

If Al Wahda do manage to sign him, Valdivia will replace Argentine Damian Diaz, who is reportedly on his way out after not featuring in new coach Javier Aguirre’s plans. Al Wahda were unavailable for comment and couldn’t be reached for a confirmation.

Valdivia’s contract with Palmeiras is nearing its end and he is set to a be free agent in the middle of August. He reportedly has a current market value of 4.50 million Euros. Valdivia made 49 appearances for Al Ain from 2008 to 2010 during which he won three titles — the Etisalat Emirates Cup, the President’s Cup and the Super Cup, under German coach Winfried Schafer, currently the coach of Jamaica. He was also linked to Manchester City during that time. Meanwhile, it is also believed that former Arsenal midfielder Denilson was in Abu Dhabi and completed a successful medical before returning to Brazil. He will return later to link up with the squad for the pre-season training camp.



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