Emirati-bankrolled Pyramids FC completed their record-shattering signing of winger Ramadan Sobhi on Monday, making a statement of intent that they will launch a serious Egyptian Premier League assault next season.
"Ramadan is a great addition to Pyramids, he is one of the most important players in Egypt and probably will be the most important for the Egyptian National team in the next 15 years," Pyramids FC CEO Mamdouh Eid told a presser on Monday.
Pyramids FC have published a short video on their social media accounts to unveil their mega-signing, marking one of the most shocking transfers in the country in almost two decades.
"Joining Pyramids FC was my own decision and no one else influenced me. I am the one who is sitting here in front of you. I signed a five-year contract but I won't reveal the amount," he said during the conference.
"I didn't just choose Pyramids FC for the money but because they are like a European club and they have big ambitions. I would like to thank them for their professionalism during negotiations and I hope we can achieve something big for the club," he added.
23-year old Sobhi, a product of Ahly's youth academy, appeared very close to penning a permanent deal with his boyhood club after spending the last 19 months on loan at the Cairo giants, only to change his mind after being lured by a lucrative offer from Pyramids over the next five season.
"There has been a lot of reports in the media about the amount of the transfer and the contract, I would like to explain that we concluded the deal rapidly. We were the last to bid and we had the lowest offer presented for Huddersfield FC. No one has the right to disclose the amount of the contract except of the player himself," Pyramids FC marketing director Amr Bassiouni said.
The amount Pyramids had paid to Huddersfield eclipsed the record $5 million Ahly paid to sign winger Hussein El-Shahat from UAE club Al-Ain in January 2019.
Pyramids have been making steady progress since they were bought by Emirati investor Salem Al Shamsi in the summer of 2019, looking more systematic than under former eccentric owner Turki Al Sheikh of Saudi Arabia.
They finished third in the league last season and qualified for the CAF Confederation Cup semi-final this term and Sobhi's arrival could further bolster their squad and help them in their bid to dethrone Ahly, who have all but sealed a fifth consecutive league title.
Pyramids are also set to sign two other Ahly veterans on free transfers -- Egyptian international right-back Ahmed Fathi and goalkeeper Sherif Ekramy.
Sobhi joined Ahly from then Premier League side Huddersfield last summer on a season-long loan deal, which ended on 30 June. He also spent the second half of last season on loan at the Red Devils, with his arrival playing a key role in helping the club bridge a gap with perennial rivals Zamalek to win the domestic league for a fourth straight time.
He has also produced some inspiring displays in the early stages of this season, only to suffer a thigh injury that kept him on the sidelines for three months. When he recovered in March, football in Egypt was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Sobhi had his first foray into European football in the summer of 2016 when he joined then Premier League side Stoke City, before moving to Huddersfield one season later after Stoke were relegated.
After failing to establish himself with his new side, he returned to Ahly in January 2019 on a six-month loan deal.
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