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Egypt’s Shikabala to play with Sporting Lisbon’s ‘B team’

The popular former Zamalek winger moved from the Cairo team just minutes before the transfer window closed

Published: Updated:

Egyptian football star Mahmoud ‘Shikabala’ Abdel-Razeq will play his first game with on the Portuguese team on Sunday against Tondela, his official Facebook said on Friday.

The 27-year-old former player with Cairo’s Zamalek is expected to make his senior team debut when Sporting Lisbon play Rio Ave in the league Feb. 22.

Shikabala made the move from his Cairo team just minutes before January’s transfer window closed, joining Sporting on a four-and-a-half year contract with a release clause of around $60 million.

The star, who trained at Zamalek’s youth academy, has a dedicated fan following, although is often denounced for failing to live up to expectations, according to Egyptian daily al-Ahram.

Shikabala’s only previous European tenure was with Greek team PAOK from 2005 to 2007.

“Everything happened so fast and I still can’t believe I am here. Moving to Sporting Lisbon was the best thing I’ve done for my career and it is a dream come true,” Shikabala told a Lisbon-based paper last week.