FC Basel welcome Egypt star Omar Gaber
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Egypt midfielder Omar Gaber, who recently joined Swiss side Basel from Zamalek, revealed that his new teammates were surprised by the special reception he received when he arrived at the club headquarters after passing a medical last week.
"The Basel football director told me that the club's president asked to conclude the deal as soon as possible," Gaber told a television programme late on Thursday.
"The Basel chairman ordered the sports director also not to go back to Switzerland without me," the former Zamalek star added.
Zamalek agreed with FC Basel to allow him to move to the Swiss side for 1.65 million euros.
The 23-year-old midfielder revealed that he told the Swiss side’s management that he can speak English fluently, to allay fears that he wouldn’t be able to communicate with the coach and his teammates.
"When I arrived in Switzerland I underwent a medical, then I went to watch a game for Basel in the Swiss League as the club's president was at my reception there," Gaber said.
"Basel players were surprised by the club president's way of dealing with me;my agent told me that I enjoyed the kind of extraordinary reception that every player hopes to have," Gaber said.
Early last month, a huge number of Zamalek fans flocked to the player's home to say goodbye to their favorite star.
He is a three-time Egypt Cup winner and a one-time Egyptian Premier League holder with the club.
Gaber, a versatile midfielder who also plays as a right-back, has been a key player in the Egyptian national team since 2011.
He is not the first Egyptian player to join Basel; winger Mohamed Salah and midfielder Mohamed Elneny were also part of the Swiss side’s squad.
Salah is currently playing for AS Roma while Elneny is playing for English Premier League topflight side Arsenal.