The new season of the Saudi League begins next Saturday, with 4 confrontations, most notably the defending champion Al Hilal against the newly promoted Al Ain from the First Division.
The veteran defender tops the list of departures from the Saudi Professional League this season, after the left-back of Al-Ahly Jeddah announced his retirement from playing, after a busy career that spanned nearly 25 years.
Abdul-Ghani, the 43-year-old, began his professional career in 1995 with Al-Ahly, who continued with him until 2008, before he went through an experience in Switzerland with Neuchatel, then returned to Saudi Arabia from the Gate of Victory between 2009 and 2017, and then became a professional with the Bulgarian Feria.
After that, Abdul-Ghani returned to the Saudi League through Uhud Club, for which he played one season (2018-2019), before settling with him at Al-Ahly again, until the end of last season.
During his career with clubs, Abdul-Ghani won 11 local and Arab titles, in addition to winning the Asian Cup and the Arab Cup, with the Saudi team.
Mohammed Al Shalhoub
The former midfielder announced his retirement last September, after a career spanning nearly 22 years with Al Hilal.
Al-Shalhoub won 33 championships with Al-Hilal locally and continually, including the Saudi League title 8 times and the AFC Champions League twice.
At the international level with the Saudi national team, Al Shalhoub, 39, won only one title, the Gulf Cup.
The 34-year-old Brazilian midfielder spent a long professional experience in Saudi Arabia, where he played for Al-Nassr between 2007 and 2009, and wore the Al-Fateh shirt between 2011 and 2016, and then Al-Qadisiyah from 2016 to 2019.
After a short experience in his country with the Brazilian club Regatta, competing in the Brazilian second division, Jose returned to the Saudi League from the gate of Al-Wehda, which he continued with him between January and September, to decide to leave at the end of last season to the Emirati Hamriyah.
It is noteworthy that Elton Jose was a member in the crowning of Al-Fateh with his only title in the history of the Saudi League, in the 2012-2013 season.
The Brazilian midfielder spent 5 years with Al Hilal since joining him in 2015 from Porto, and until his departure to JSC Al-Ahly at the end of the last season.
Eduardo (30 years) is the historical goal scorer for foreigners in Al Hilal, with 81 goals, noting that he has achieved with the team 8 titles, 3 of which are in the Saudi League, as well as the AFC Champions League title.
The Chilean playmaker joined the Jeddah Federation in 2016 from the Emirati youth (currently Shabab Al-Ahly Dubai), and spent 4 years with him before his departure to Al-Fayhaa in the Mercato last winter after he left the accounts of Henk Tin Cat, the former coach of the federation.
Villanueva, 34, played for several months with Al-Fayhaa, before returning to his country from the gate of Palestino Club, with whom he signed a contract that extends for one season.
Villanueva played more than 120 matches with Al-Ittihad and Al-Fayhaa, and won the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Cup and the Crown Prince Cup with the “Tigers”
Stars may leave
In addition to the late stars and legends, a number of prominent stars may also leave before the transfer market in Saudi Arabia closes on 25 October.
Moroccan Abdel Razzaq Hamdallah, the star of the victory attack, threatened to leave the “global” due to late financial dues, noting that recent press reports indicated that the club’s management had received financial support from Abdulaziz Baghlaf, the golden member of the club, to solve the player’s crisis.
In addition, the Syrian Omar Al-Somah, the star of Ahly Jeddah, expressed his desire to leave the “castle of cups” a while ago, and seems close to leaving the team.
Earlier press reports confirmed that the other Syrian, Omar Khribin, striker of Al-Hilal, is close to leaving the “leader”, in light of the interest of Egyptian Zamalek to obtain his services.
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