Ahmed Khalil has been a hot topic in Emirati football for a while after his failed move from Shabab Al Ahli to Al Jazira last summer. With his move to the 2016/17 Arabian Gulf League Champions in the works months before the 2017 summer transfer window began, hopes were high for the striker to become a welcome addition to the Pride of Abu Dhabi as they looked to perform at the FIFA Club World Cup.
However, after contractual issues between the club and the player – mostly to do with the wage cap placed on Arabian Gulf League players – and a saga that saw the final details of his signing brought into overtime of the 2018 winter transfer window, Al Ain were proud to announce of his signing on a 6-month contract.
Ahmed Khalil spoke to the press after his signing, expressing that he was “very proud to sign for Al Ain”, before continuing to claim that “Al Ain are a club that local and continental players want to sign for”.
He also highlighted the issue of the wage cap: “I lived the toughest hours of my footballing career when I was told that I wasn’t able to be registered with Al Ain because of the wage cap, but thanks to God I was able to sign with the team.”
Khalil will be a welcome addition to Al Ain, who got rid of Brazilian striker Dyanfres Douglas and signed with versatile Egyptian Hussein El Shahat.