Cannavaro seals shock switch
Veteran defender heading to the Middle East
Last Updated: June 2, 2010 9:39am
Cannavaro: World Cup winner
Defending UAE champions Al Ahli have announced the shock signing of Fabio Cannavaro.
The World Cup winner has agreed a two-year contract, having parted company with Juventus at the end of last season.
The 36-year-old, who led his country to global glory in 2006, is reported to have spurned offers from Serie A in order to head to the Middle East.
"We announce that we have signed 2006 FIFA World Cup winner Fabio Cannavaro for two years," said Abdullah Al Nabooda, chairman of Al Ahli's board of directors, on the club's the official website.
"This deal with a player like Cannavaro is one of the most important deals for us because he's a player with great experience and talent, while he's also a leader on the field as he led Italy to win the 2006 FIFA World Cup title."
Cannavaro, who is set to quit international football after this summer's World Cup, claims he always hoped to be able to call time on his playing days in Dubai.
A glittering career has seen him turn out for European heavyweights such as Parma, Inter Milan and Real Madrid, but he maintains he is happy to be bowing out away from the limelight.
"I'm happy to sign for Al Ahli," said Cannavaro.
"I always thought of moving to live in Dubai as I love it and I have achieved my dream by moving to Dubai and play for one of its big clubs like Al Ahli."