The Egyptian 21-year-old attacking midfielder Mohamed Saleh will be transferred from Switzerland’s FC Basel to the UK’s Chelsea Football Club, the team’s official website announced on Thursday.
Chelsea FC managed to seal the deal for a striking 11 million British pounds, which could make it the most expensive transfer deal involving an Egyptian player. That title was previously held by Ahmed Hossam Mido, who was traded from the Netherlands’ Ajax Club to France’s Marseille Club for 13 million euros.
Saleh started his career in 2010 in Egypt’s Mokawloon Club, and by 2012 was selected as Africa’s most promising player. He helped FC Basel win the Swiss League championships in 2012-13 — he scored nine times in that season, with three of those goals against Chelsea.
The Liverpool club had been also trying to recruit Saleh to the team during the January transfer window, but Chelsea managed to catch the target before the Anfield Club at the last minute.
Saleh is the first Egyptian to play with Chelsea FC. He’s expected to face fierce competition in a team filled with talented players in the same position, including Spanish Juan Mata and Brazilian Ramires. However, the results of collaboration between Saleh and star manager Jose Mourinho are highly anticipated.
Following the announcement, Chelsea FC’s official Facebook page was flooded with comments from Egyptians celebrating the news. One user expressed his happiness, then asked the club to “feed Saleh properly,” and volunteered the traditional Egyptian recipe for an energizing “Molokheyya soup with rabbit meat” to help the player perform well.