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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 September 2018

Nice give Al Ain deadline to accept loan offer for Omar Abdulrahman

French side hope the lure of Uefa Champions League football can convince the player and Arabian Gulf League club to agree a deal.

Omar Abdulrahman, right, is in line to appear for Al Ain in their Asian Champions League quarter-final first leg against Saudi Arabia's Al Hilal. Courtesy AGL
Omar Abdulrahman, right, is in line to appear for Al Ain in their Asian Champions League quarter-final first leg against Saudi Arabia's Al Hilal. Courtesy AGL

French club Nice have given Al Ain until this weekend to accept their loan offer for UAE playmaker Omar Abdulrahman, The National have been told.

Arabian Gulf League club Al Ain reportedly rejected an initial loan offer from Nice in June for Abdulrahman, with an official at the club passing on a copy of the transfer request letter to The National.

While Al Ain refused the first approach from Nice, it was understood that the prospect of having the UAE’s leading footballer feature in the Uefa Champions League meant a deal could eventually be struck.

Nice secured their place in the Champions League group stage on Wednesday following an away goals victory over Dutch side Ajax.

With the new season fast approaching, Nice are reportedly keen to conclude a loan deal for Abdulrahman by the end of this week. Should they fail in their attempts to lure the Emirati to France, Nice are expected to turn their attentions to Dutch midfielder Wesley Sneijder, who was released by Turkish club Galatasaray this summer.

Abdulrahman, 25, has long been tipped for a move to Europe, with the Al Ain captain previously attracting interest from a number of leading clubs including Arsenal, Hamburg, Valencia and Benfica. In 2013, he claimed he turned down the opportunity to move to the Portuguese side during that year's winter transfer window.

Abdulrahman signed a new contract in February 2015 to keep him at Al Ain until next year – a deal that was thought to make him the highest-earning Emirati player in UAE football.

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