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Okocha and Lehmann on the move

Published: Wednesday 19 July 2006, 21.19CET
News round-up: Jay-Jay Okocha has left European football to play in Qatar while Matthias Lehmann has arrived in the Bundesliga with TSV Alemannia Aachen.

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Published: Wednesday 19 July 2006, 21.19CET

Okocha and Lehmann on the move

News round-up: Jay-Jay Okocha has left European football to play in Qatar while Matthias Lehmann has arrived in the Bundesliga with TSV Alemannia Aachen.
Former Nigerian international Jay-Jay Okocha has signed a one-year contract with Qatar Sports Club. The 32-year-old midfielder was released by Bolton Wanderers FC in May after scoring 14 goals in 124 games following his move to England from Paris Saint-Germain FC in 2002. Capped 74 times, Okocha travelled to the 1994, 1998 and 2002 FIFA World Cups. Meanwhile, 33-year-old Australia defender Tony Popovic has left English side Crystal Palace FC to join another Qatari club, Al-Arabi SC.

TSV Alemannia Aachen have paid a club-record fee in the region of €900,000 to sign Germany Under-21 midfielder Matthias Lehmann from 2. Bundesliga outfit TSV 1860 München. Lehmann, 23, has accepted a three-year contract with the promoted team.

Atalanta BC have signed midfielder Massimo Donati on loan from AC Milan for the coming campaign. The Serie B champions therefore recover the services of a player who made his top-flight debut with the Bergamo club before joining Milan in 2001. The 25-year-old has subsequently had loan spells with Parma FC, Torino FC, UC Sampdoria and FC Messina Peloro.

HNK Hajduk Split have completed two signings less than two weeks before the start of the Croatian season. The 25-year-old Hungarian defender Miklós Gaál arrives from Portuguese Liga side CS Marítimo, while 29-year-old Bosnia-Herzegovina striker Mladen Bartolović moves to the coast from NK Zagreb. Meanwhile, Bartolović's international team-mate Dragan Blatnjak, 24, has rejoined Hajduk after failing to find a club abroad.

The Football Union of Russia has handed FC Lokomotiv Moskva midfielder Laryea Kingston a six-match ban. It ruled that the Ghanaian international deliberately injured FC Dinamo Moskva defender Leandro Fernández during the teams' meeting on 11 July. The suspension includes Lokomotiv's game against FC Shinnik Yaroslavl, which took place at the weekend.

Bundesliga newcomers FC Energie Cottbus have acquired Polish central defender Łukasz Kanik from Górnik Zabrze. The 18-year-old has been given a three-year contract after a trial spell. VfL Wolfsburg have loaned 22-year-old midfielder Karsten Fischer to 2. Bundesliga side TuS Koblenz for the 2006/07 campaign.

Gimnàstic de Tarragona are preparing for their top-flight return in Spain by snapping up 29-year-old defender Aníbal Samuel Matellán from Getafe CF. The Argentinian centre-back played 22 times in the Primera División in 2005/06. Meanwhile, RC Deportivo La Coruña have loaned 21-year-old midfielder Iván Carril and 20-year-old forward Xisco to second division side UD Vecindario.

Wisła Kraków have loaned striker Rafał Boguski to Ekstraklasa rivals GKS Bełchatów until 31 December 2006. The 22-year-old featured in two league games for Wisła last term. Also in Poland, Korona Kielce have sent Adam Czerkas on a season's loan to English club Queen's Park Rangers FC. The 22-year-old scored six goals in 23 appearances during a similar spell at MKS Odra Wodzisław Śląski last term. Meanwhile, ŁKS Łódź have landed Bosnia-Herzegovnian defender Tarik Cerić, 28, from NK Posušje on a three-year deal.

Dutchman Ton Caanen has inked a one-year contract to coach Ukrainian Premier League club FC Stal Alchevsk. The 40-year-old becomes the latest trainer from the Netherlands to work in the former Soviet Union, following in the footsteps of compatriots Dick Advocaat (FC Zenit St. Petersburg) and Guus Hiddink (Russia). The Ukrainian season kicks off on Friday.

Dunfermline Athletic FC have awarded a two-year deal to former Liverpool FC apprentice Calum Woods. The 19-year-old left-back impressed during a trial with the Scottish Premier League team.

Latvia's FK Riga have moved aside Eriks Grigjans and installed Sergei Semenov as head coach. Grigjans has paid the price for Riga's dismal first half of the season, with the club lying second from bottom in the Virsliga with eleven defeats from 15 matches. Semenov steps up from the Riga reserves, with the demoted Grigjans taking his place.

Reuven Atar has been appointed coach of Israeli Premier League new boys Maccabi Herzliya FC, within 24 hours of his predecessor Freddy David's resignation. The 37-year-old former Israeli international recently left his post at Maccabi Netanya FC following two seasons in charge. David stood down in protest at a perceived lack of ambition at the promoted club. A statement said: "Maccabi Herzliya extends its gratitude to Freddy David for two seasons of achievement."

Last updated: 20/07/06 15.43CET

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