x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

England winger Wright-Phillips open to Arabian Gulf League move

Former Chelsea and Manchester City player nearing end of contract with Queens Park Rangers

Shaun Wright-Phillips, shown here playing for Manchester City on July 25, 2009, has said he would open to continuing his career in the Arabian Gulf League or Major League Soccer after finishing his contract with Queens Park Rangers. Felix Dlangamandla / Action Images
Shaun Wright-Phillips, shown here playing for Manchester City on July 25, 2009, has said he would open to continuing his career in the Arabian Gulf League or Major League Soccer after finishing his contract with Queens Park Rangers. Felix Dlangamandla / Action Images

Shaun Wright-Phillips, the former Chelsea and Manchester City winger, says he is open to the idea of a move to the Arabian Gulf League for the 2014/15 season.

The England international, 32, is in the final months of a three-year deal with Queens Park Rangers in the English Championship.

“We don’t get to see it on TV here, but I’ve heard a lot about the league in the UAE,” he said. “I’ve been to Dubai many times for holidays. It’s a beautiful country.”

He said “many greats” such as Diego Maradona, Fabio Cannavaro, Michel Salgado and Asamoah Gyan “are playing and working there, and that has put a lot of attention to the league there”.

“I saw UAE play at the London Olympics for the first time and I was really impressed with how they played against the likes of Great Britain and Uruguay,” Wright-Phillips said.

“It will obviously be interesting to play in the UAE league. My agent has not been approached, so we will see what happens end of the season, and see if QPR gets into the Premier League.”

He said he also is interested in continuing his career in Major League Soccer in North America.

Of MLS, he said: “My brother Bradley plays for the Red Bulls in New York and that’s a league which interests me as well, so let’s see what happens.”

Wright-Phillips has not started a match for QPR since September and has not scored in nine matches this season. He is likely to be pushed further down the pecking order at Loftus Road by the loan signing of Ravel Morrison from West Ham.

“It’s been stop-start for me so far, due to injuries, but we are getting there,” Wright-Phillips said. “Obviously, I would’ve liked to score more goals, but we got a important point against Leeds United. That’s what matters right now.

“We are in the mix for the promotion back to the Premier League through the play-offs. That’s our target and that’s what manager Harry Redknapp has been telling us, we need to be back to the Premier League.”

sports@thenational.ae

Follow us on Twitter at @SprtNationalUAE