FC Schalke 04 coach Huub Stevens says he has signed a player with "special qualities" after Ibrahim Afellay completed his switch from FC Barcelona on a season-long loan deal.
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FC Schalke 04 have completed the signing of FC Barcelona attacking midfielder Ibrahim Afellay on a season-long loan deal.
The 26-year-old will link up with Huub Stevens, Schalke's Dutch coach who managed Afellay at PSV Eindhoven during the 2008/09 campaign. "I am looking forward to working with Ibrahim," said Stevens. "He has special qualities and can play in several positions – at Eindhoven he had a central role but he can be played on the left or right as well."
The move also represents an opportunity for regular first-team football after the Dutch international managed only four Spanish Liga appearances for Barcelona last term. Afellay had moved to the Camp Nou in December 2010 after eight seasons, and 159 Eredivisie games, with PSV. Although he won the UEFA Champions League in 2010/11, he started just eight top-flight matches for the Catalan side in total.
Schalke begin their UEFA Champions League Group B campaign at Olympiacos FC on 18 September, with Arsenal FC and Montpellier Hérault SC making up the section.