Montreal Impact add Swiss international Dzemaili

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The midfielder will join the MLS side on loan from Serie A club Bologna FC 1909 as a designated player after the move was announced in December

Midfielder Blerim Dzemaili has joined the Montreal Impact on loan from Bologna FC 1909, the MLS side announced Tuesday.

The Swiss international joined the club as a designated player Monday, just before the close of the MLS primary transfer window.

The 31-year-old Dzemaili came to an agreement with the Impact in December, with the club announcing the move at that time with the caveat that he would arrive until June.

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Speaking back in December, Impact and Bologna FC owner Joey Saputo said: “I’m not hiding it: Dzemaili’s contract is a multi-year deal. He’ll be in Bologna until June 2017, and he will then be transferred to Montreal. He’s not hiding that either. He’s ready to come to Montreal.”

With the MLS window closing until July and Bologna having only three games remaining with its place in Serie A assured for next season, the midfielder moved early.

"Dzemaili’s profile is very interesting for our team,” Impact technical director Adam Braz said when the move was announced in December. “We see him as a hybrid central midfielder between a No. 8 and a No. 10. He has the physical capacities to play box to box, and one of his main strengths is his ability to make late trailing runs in the box. He’s an international player with a lot of experience playing at the highest level. He’ll bring a lot to this group, not only on the field but also in the locker room with his experience.”

The midfielder has scored eight goals and added three assists in 31 appearances this season in Serie A – his first with Bologna after joining the club from Galatarasary. However, Dzemaili is a veteran of Serie A, having played eight seasons in the league with Torino, Parma, Napoli and Genoa prior to joining Bologna. He also played in the Swiss league with Zurich.

Dzemaili has been capped 56 times by the Swiss national team, and featured in both the 2014 World Cup and Euro 2016. He has scored six goals and added three assists for his international side.

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