News from the medical front is all good for Al Ain. The goalkeeper Yousuf Abdulrahman is recovering well from serious injuries suffered in a car crash, a club official said yesterday, and the Moroccan striker Soufiane Alloudi is sound enough to keep his place as the club's third foreign player. Abdulrahman, 21, the club and national team keeper, had surgery to repair fractures to his jaw, cheek bones and collarbone suffered on September 2 while he was driving from his home in Kalba to a training session in Al Ain.
"All the medical reports show that Abdulrahman is improving well," said Majid al Owais, the team director. "We are hoping for things to turn for the better in the coming hours and days, and wish a speedy return for him. "He is a very important element of the team and we can only pray that he will be back with us at the earliest." The unexpectedly quick recovery of Alloudi allowed Al Ain to end their search for a replacement.
Alloudi suffered a knee injury during a friendly with Al Shabab of Oman last month, and it was thought he would be out for four months. However, updated medical reports from France suggest he will be ready to play in two weeks. He is expected to return to Al Ain this week. He joins Jose Sand, the Argentine striker, and Ibrahima Keita, the Ivorian midfielder, as Al Ain's foreign trio. Alloudi has a contract with Al Ain until the end of this season.
As Al Ain wait on his recovery, they also are without the services of Keita, who has been ruled out for six weeks after picking up a knee injury as Alloudi's replacement in the club's opening Pro League match, against Dubai. Despite the siege of injuries, Al Ain won their first two Pro League matches and are on six points with Al Jazira and Baniyas. Al Ain resume Pro League play at home on Friday night against Sharjah.