Egyptian defender Ahmed Hegazi shows his gratitude to Al-Ittihad s fans during the match with sepahan on Monday 4 December, 2023. Photo courtesy of Al-Ittihad.
Hegazi, who joined Al-Ittihad from West Bromwich Albion in 2020, suffered a cruciate ligament rupture in May and missed 191 days of action before making his comeback against Sepahan Esfahan of Iran on Monday.
The 32-year-old played the 76 minutes as Al-Ittihad won 2-1 to finish with 15 points from six games, five wins and one loss, in Group C of the continental competition.
“I am a professional player and I have a contract with Al-Ittihad; I give all respect to the fans and the administration in any decision,” Hegazi told Saudi local media.
“I am achieving what is required of me, which is to return in the best possible way for me and in the shortest possible time to help the team,” he added.
Recently, Al-Ittihad’s president Anmar Al-Haili praised Hegazi’s leadership and quality, saying he was worth keeping despite his lengthy absence.
“Hegazi is not only a team leader but also a brilliant player. Therefore, despite his cruciate ligament injury, the club decided to include him in the squad,” Al-Haili told Saudi local media.
Since joining Al-Ittihad, Hegazi has become an indispensable part of the team.
Despite his defensive position, he has managed to score 10 goals and provide one assist in 80 appearances with the Saudi club.
Notably, Hegazi was listed among the top 11 players in the Saudi title for the 2022-2023 season; his influential presence greatly contributed to Al-Ittihad's league victory.
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