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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 14 December 2018

Al Nasr bring in Mauro Zarate from Premier League club Watford to replace injured Wanderley

Wanderley suffered a knee injury in the league victory at Al Jazira on Saturday in which the Brazilian scored twice in a 4-2 win

Mauro Zarate, seen here playing for West Ham United in 2015, has signed on a season-long loan with Al Nasr. Eddie Keogh / Reuters
Mauro Zarate, seen here playing for West Ham United in 2015, has signed on a season-long loan with Al Nasr. Eddie Keogh / Reuters

Al Nasr have signed Argentine playmaker Mauro Zarate on loan from Premier League side Watford to replace the injured Wanderley.

The Dubai club completed the surprise move on Monday, hours before the UAE transfer window shut until the winter. Zarate has signed for Nasr until the end of the 2017/18 campaign, with Watford retaining the option to recall him in January.

The Arabian Gulf League side, managed by Italian Cesare Prandelli, were in the market for a foreign replacement for striker Wanderley, who suffered a knee injury in the league victory at Al Jazira on Saturday. The Brazilian scored twice against the UAE champions in a 4-2 win. He was later ruled out for two months.

Zarate, 30, has previously represented among others Lazio, Inter Milan, West ham United and Fiorentina before transferring to Watford from the Italian Serie side in January.

However, his playing time at the Hertfordshire club was restricted following a knee injury suffered against West Ham in February, limiting the attacking midfielder to only three appearances.

Zarate has experience of playing in the Gulf having spent a short time in Qatar with Al Sadd in 2007. He made only six appearances for the Doha side, scoring four goals, but then secured a loan switch to the Premier League with Birmingham City. Following the club’s relegation to the English Championship, Zarate moved to Italy’s Lazio, initially on a temporary basis. The transfer was later made permanent.

At Nasr, he joins a club sitting seventh in the Arabian Gulf League after three matches. The team's other foreign players include Wanderley, fellow Brazilian Marcelo Cirino, Moroccan Abdelaziz Barrada and Lebanese defender Joan Oumari.

Elsewhere, Shabab Al Ahli Dubai have re-registered forward Moussa Sow in place of playmaker Tomas De Vincenti, while Al Ain re-signed veteran midfielder Ibrahim Diaky.

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