Saudi players signed to Spanish La Liga clubs for World Cup boost

At least six players have joined Spanish clubs following an agreement between Spain's La Liga and the Saudi federation. (AFP)

Saudi Arabia are gearing up for their first World Cup finals appearance since 2006 by sending players on loan to Spain to gain experience.

At least six players have joined Spanish clubs following an agreement between Spain's La Liga and the Saudi federation.

Villarreal, Leganes and Levante from the top flight, alongside second division outfits Gijon, Valladolid and Rayo Vallecano, each simultaneously announced on Sunday they had signed a Saudi player.

Villarreal have taken winger Salem Al-Dawsari, attacking midfielder Yahia Al-Shehri has gone to Leganes while Levante have signed forward Fahad Al-Muwallad.

The loans come less than five months before the World Cup in Russia begins.

Saudi Arabia are in a group alongside the hosts, Uruguay and Egypt.

For the Spanish clubs, the loans are a way to gain exposure in a little-tapped market.

"With Yahia Al-Shehri's arrival, the club has improved its squad and also gained visibility in the Arab world," Leganes said in a statement.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:52 - GMT 06:52
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