Cardiff City striker Kenwyne Jones in Abu Dhabi to complete Al Jazira loan move
Kenwyne Jones is on the verge of becoming an Al Jazira player after the Cardiff City striker completed his medical with the Abu Dhabi side.
The Trinidad and Tobago forward, 31, is expected to be announced as the club’s replacement for the injured Mirko Vucinic once the formalities on a six-month deal are concluded. Jones was present at Jazira’s training on Tuesday night.
The frontman has experience of the Premier League having previously represented Sunderland and Stoke City. His £8 million (Dh43m) transfer to the Britannia Stadium in 2010 was then a club record fee.
In January last year, he moved to Cardiff, who play in England’s second tier, where last season he finished the campaign as the Welsh side’s top scorer, with 13 league goals. He notched twice in the FA Cup, too.
Jazira will hope Jones can replicate that form at the Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium, particularly since the club currently languish 10th in the UAE top flight following a poor start to the season.
Manager Abel Braga parted company with Jazira last month and was replaced by Henk Ten Cate, the former Ajax and Panathinaikos coach.
The Dutchman should have two new recruits to help his new side climb the league, with Angel Lafita, the Spanish winger, having agreed to join the club from Getafe. Lafita, 31, was also in attendance at training on Tuesday and seems most likely to take the place in the squad of Thiago Neves.
The Brazilian has not settled since a summer move from Saudi Arabia’s Al Hilal and has therefore been tipped for a return to his homeland. Palmeiras are said to have expressed an interest in acquiring his services.
Jazira wait for the return of Jefferson Farfan, the Peruvian winger who has been sidelined since the first week of December after injuring his ankle. Considered a major addition when he signed in July from Germany’s Schalke, Farfan has featured in only 11 matches for Jazira, scoring twice.
Lafita, meanwhile, will add experience and a goal-scoring threat, with the former Real Zaragoza midfielder having also featured for Deportivo La Coruna. In 2012, he left Zaragoza for Getafe, for whom he has found the net 14 times in 84 Primera Liga appearances.
Jazira, second last season to champions Al Ain, next face Al Wasl in the league. The Dubai club are fourth in the standings at the halfway stage and on Monday held second-placed Al Ahli to a goalless draw. Jazira’s last match was the 2-1 defeat to Al Dhafra on December 26.
Follow us on Twitter @NatSportUAE
Like us on Facebook at facebook.com/TheNationalSport
Updated: January 5, 2016 04:00 AM