Zamalek have accepted a lucrative $2.8 million offer from Jeddah-based club Ahli to sign left-back Mohamed Abdel-Shafi on a permanent basis, the Cairo club's chairman Mortada Mansour said on Saturday.
"We reached a final agreement with Ahli Jeddah over the permanent transfer of Abdel-Shafi," Mansour, who spent heavily last summer to bolster an underachieving Zamalek squad, said in a television interview.
"They will pay us $2.8 million in addition to the 1.2 million they paid last summer," he added, without revealing the length of the new deal.
The 29-year-old, who has been one of Zamalek's most consistent performers since joining in 2008, moved to Ahli on a season-long loan last summer.
He quickly established himself as a key player at the club and was acclaimed by Saudi media for a string of impressive displays.
Abdel-Shafi, known for his defensive solidity and pinpoint crosses from the left, is also a regular member of Egypt's squad, having made 35 international appearances. He played a key role in helping the Pharaohs win the last of their record seven African Cup of Nations titles in 2010.
Zamalek are likely to use the money generated from Abdel-Shafi's transfers to make new signings in the summer, with Mansour vowing to acquire the services of "17 players" after a highly successful season.
The Cairo giants are closing in on their first Egyptian Premier League title since 2004, thanks in part to a host of new signings who quickly established themselves.
Ahli's Jeddah rivals Ittihad are also in the hunt to sign Zamalek's in-form playmaker Ayman Hefni, Mansour added.
"We can now make use of the money in the best possible way by signing Lionel Messi," Mansour joked.
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