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Al Ain boost strike-force with Swedish striker Berg

We want to reach the required degree of readiness for the new season, says chairman of club’s board of directors

Image Credit: Supplied
Marcus Berg with an Al Ain official. Berg joins Al Ain on a two-year contract from Greek club Panathinaikos.
Gulf News

Abu Dhabi: Al Ain roped in Swedish striker Marcus Berg from Greece Club Panathinaikos on a two-year contract, the club confirmed on their twitter account. This was Al Ain’s second foreign signing after Japanese midfielder Tsukasa Shiotani, who came in place of South Korean Lee Myung Joo.

Berg, the highest scorer in the Greek league, comes in place of Saudi striker Nasser Al Shamrani and will be donning the No.9 jersey. With Colombian winger Danilo Asprilla on his way out and put on sale, Al Ain have one more foreigner signing remaining to beef up their arsenal before they take on Saudi Arabia’s Al Hilal in the Champions League quarter finals first leg on August 21.

Ganem Mubarak Al Hajri, chairman of the board of directors of Al Ain Football Club, said that the management is trying to provide as much support as possible as per coach Zoran Mamic’s requirements.

“We have re-doubled our efforts to provide all that is requested by Coach Zoran. We want Al Ain to reach the required degree of readiness for the new season at the local and continental levels to achieve our desired objectives,” said Al Hajri while welcoming Berg to the club.

Though there were reports in the social media that Panathinaikos had asked for a whopping five million pounds, Al Hajri revealed that the club had settled for much lower fee.

“We had to really work on the deal but it is far lesser than what has appeared in social media. We are happy that Berg showed his desire to join the club, especially when the negotiation was haywire. His support helped to get the deal through finally,” said Al Hajri.

Though there were no comments available from Berg, it is learnt he flew out immediately after completing the formalities. The Swedish international has been a prolific scorer for Panathinaikos since joining the club in 2013 from Germany’s Hamburg. He has scored 73 goals in 115 league matches and in the 2016/17 Greek Super League’s season has top scored with 22 goals in 28 matches. He has figured in 47 outings for his national team and has scored 12 times.

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