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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 22 June 2018

Cosmin Olaroiu leaves Shabab Al Ahli Dubai by 'mutual consent' as Mahdi Ali takes over

Former UAE manager has been appointed eight months after leaving the national team.

Cosmin Olaroiu won two Arabian Gulf League titles during his time as Al Ahli manager. Satish Kumar / The National
Cosmin Olaroiu won two Arabian Gulf League titles during his time as Al Ahli manager. Satish Kumar / The National

Comsin Olaroiu has left Shabab Al Ahli Dubai "by mutual consent" and has been replaced by former UAE manager Mahdi Ali.

Olaroiu had four successful years in charge of Al Ahli before the merger of the three Dubai clubs this summer, winning the Arabian Gulf League twice as well as two Arabian Gulf Cups. In 2015, he led Al Ahli to the final of the Asian Champions League, narrowly missing out over two legs to China's Guangzhou Evergrande.

However, a run of seven successive draws in the league this season means Shabab Al Ahli Dubai are down in fifth place, seven points behind leaders Al Wasl.

Shabab Al Ahli Dubai announced Olaroiu's departure in a statement on their Twitter account, while also confirming the arrival of Mahdi Ali.

Named AGL Coach of the Year three times, Olaroiu also led Al Ain to back-to-back league titles before his contentious move to rivals Al Ahli in 2013.

Mahdi Ali takes over eight months after stepping down as the national team manager following the 2018 World Cup qualifying defeat to Australia that left the UAE's chances of reaching Russia all but over.

During his four-and-a-half years in charge of the UAE team, Mahdi Ali led the side to the 2013 Gulf Cup of Nations title and to third place at the 2015 Asian Cup. The UAE also reached the final stage of World Cup qualifying, finishing fourth behind Japan, Saudi Arabia, and Australia.