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Thursday, 18 July 2019

Tunisia's Msakni explains why he chose Qatar over move to Europe

Youssef Msakni moves to Qatari club Lekhwiya for Arab record fee of $15 million after European clubs fail to persuade him to move north

Mohamad Mosselhi , Tuesday 10 Jul 2012
Youssef Msakni
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Esperance's forward Youssef Msakni said on Tuesday he had opted to move to Lekhwiya rather than Europe because the Qatari side were more serious about acquiring his services than their European counterparts.

The 21-year-old Tunisian signed a four-year contract with Lekhwiya last week for $15 million, an Arab record transfer fee.

Several European clubs, including Premier League side Arsenal and French duo Paris Saint Germain and Lille were believed to be interested in his services, but Msakni eventually chose the lucrative Qatari deal.

"I wanted to play in Qatar, the opportunity was given to me and I took it," he told Sky Sports.

"Lille were interested and wanted me but they did not show the willingness to sign me like the Qataris.

"Arsenal were also keen but not enough for me to choose them. Maybe one day I will be in a very big league in Europe," he added.

Msakni's deal will come into effect next January, however, as the talented forward will have the chance to complete Esperance's campaign in this year's CAF Champions League.

The international forward was on target in Esperance's 2-0 away win over Nigerian side Sunshine Stars in their Champions League group stage opener.

(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports)

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