Former Fifa World Player of the Year Fabio Cannavaro will leave Al Ahli after the Dubai club signed a third foreigner in Chile international Luis Jimenez.
Al Ahli told The National an announcement on former Inter and West Ham midfielder Jimenez would be made soon, following on from the signings of Brazilian strike duo Jaja and Grafite.
UAE Pro-League rules limit clubs to four foreigners per squad, whom one must come from within the Asian Football Confederation.
Therefore, the signing of Jimenez effectively forces 37-year-old Cannavaro out at Al Ahli, despite the club being coy about his future over the past week.
Al Ahli chief executive officer Ahmed Khalifa Hamad had told Sport360 over the weekend that Cannavaro was staying with the club following reports he had been released.
“Fabio Cannavaro is going nowhere. I don’t know where these reports emerged from, but he has a year left on his contract with us and he is expected to stay with the club,” said Hamad.
However, later in the week Hamad appeared to perform a stunning u-turn on the Italian defender's future when he revealed the club's recruitment plans to Gulf News.
"We have signed two Brazilians (Grafite and Jaja) and will sign two more foreign players - another foreigner and another for the one Asian player allowance. This is already in process," said Hamad.
Cannavaro, who has been linked with newly-promoted Premier League club QPR, made 16 league appearances for Al Ahli during the 2010-11 season when they finished down in eighth.
Jimenez, who spent the 2010-11 campaign in Italy on loan at Cesena, is expected to be confirmed on a four-year contract.