Official: Schalke sign Afellay on loan

The Netherlands international will move to the Bundesliga on a temporary basis after he was deemed surplus to requirements at the Catalan giants
Schalke have announced on their official website that they have completed the signing of Ibrahim Afellay from Barcelona on a one-year loan deal.

The Bundesliga side were eager to add some more creativity to their squad before the closure of the summer transfer window, and exclusively revealed on Wednesday that they had opened talks with Barca over the transfer of the Netherlands international.

Negotiations continued on Thursday and Afellay has now completed his move after passing a medical on Friday morning.

Afellay joined Barcelona from PSV in January 2011, and played an important role in the Catalans' Champions League victory that season with an assist in the semi-final tie versus Real Madrid. Nevertheless, a serious knee injury kept him out of action for the majority of the 2011-12 campaign.

Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova recently revealed that Afellay was unlikely to play a big role at the Blaugrana this season, prompting the 26-year-old to seek a loan move in order to get regular first team football elsewhere.

"I [can] taste the trust. It's a beautiful club to play for. Schalke is a top club in every way," explained Afellay on Sport-Promotion's website.

"They always play for the title in the Bundesliga and they're in the group phase of the Champions League. This is what I was looking for. I'm really looking forward to starting here."

Afellay couldn't be promised the game time which he required at Barca, which he revealed was a reason behind his departure.

"I would be playing, but not as much as I wanted. We [he and Vilanova] both agreed that it would be best that I would leave on loan," explained the Dutchman.

"I had a really warm chat with the coach. He shows trust in me. I'll play around Klaas-Jan Huntelaar. That must become the combination and I like that.

"There still has to be some paperwork done, but I expect that will be done soon. So if I can join Schalke on Saturday, I'll be glad to. I'm ready," he said.