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Loan signings strengthen Sporting

Sporting Clube de Portugal have agreed deals to bring midfielder Leandro Romagnoli and SC Braga defender Abel on loan to the Estádio José Alvalade.

Sporting Clube de Portugal have agreed a deal to bring attacking midfielder Leandro Romagnoli to the Estádio José Alvalade and have also signed SC Braga defender Abel on loan.

Long-term loan
Romagnoli will move to Lisbon on an 18-month loan from Mexican side Veracruz, with Sporting having the option to buy the player at the end of the loan. The 24-year-old was part of the Argentina side that claimed the FIFA World Youth Championship in 2001 and played for CA San Lorenzo de Almagro in his homeland between 1998 and 2004, scoring 22 goals in 151 league appearances. He moved to Mexico in summer 2004 and went on to make 29 league appearances for Veracruz, scoring once.

Playing to win
"I'm delighted to have been given the opportunity to play in Europe," said Romagnoli, whose loan will cost Sporting a reported €1m. "I hope I can play and win something with Sporting. This is a [FIFA] World Cup year so I want to show my value and eventually be called up to the Argentinian national team."

Abel on the move
Sporting have also reinforced their defence by signing Braga right-back Abel in a swap deal with Wenger, who left Braga in the summer to join Sporting but was unable to make a first-team impact in Lisbon. The two players will move on loan for the remainder of the season with the clubs each having the option to make the moves permanent in the summer.