Hossam Ghaly of Egypt's Ahly (Photo: Reuters)
Veteran midfielder Hossam Ghaly has returned to Ahly after a brief one-year stint with Belgian side Lierse, the Cairo giants announced on Wednesday.
Citing political instability in the turmoil-stricken Egypt, the 32-year-old opted not to renew his contract with Ahly last summer, opting to join Lierse, who are owned by Egyptian businessman Maged Sami, on a free transfer.
"Club chairman Mahmoud Taher has revealed that he had finalised an agreement with Lierse owner Maged Sami to sign Ghaly this summer," Ahly said in a brief statement on their official website.
Ghaly came through the youth ranks of Ahly, quickly establishing himself as one of the Red Devils' key players in the early 2000s.
His first spell abroad was with Dutch side Feyenoord before he joined English side Tottenham Hotspur in 2006 but he departed in an acrimonious manner after taking off his Spurs shirt and throwing it to the ground when he was substituted by then coach Martin Jol during a Premier League game in 2007.
He had brief loan spells with Derby County in England and Al-Nassr in Saudi Arabia before returning to Ahly in the summer of 2010.
Ghaly, who won a host of titles with Egypt and Africa's most successful club, is constantly criticized for failing to live up to his potential, with critics mainly blaming him for his knack for showboating.
He is a talented central midfield who is renowned for his astute passes and neat distribution of the ball.
(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)