Osasuna sign Javad Nekounam
By Neissan Ansari & Sam Fakhimi
PFDC - PAMPELONA, Iranian midfielder Javad Nekounam has completed a switch to Spanish side Osasuna. The 25-year-old has agreed a two year contract of 5 millions Euros with an option for the third year and was presented to the local press today by the President of the CA Osasuna, Pachi Izco, and the Sport Director Juanjo Lorenzo.
Nekounam has been a fixture for the Iranian national team, and had been linked with several Bundesliga sides, but instead is bound for the Pamplona based side. The 25-year-old Nekounam has won 76 caps for Team Melli and moves on a free transfer from UAE side Al Sharjah.
Nekounam addressed his first words in front of a huge media mass, "I want to thank the president and the coaching staff of Osasuna. I want to gain great victories with this club and I will put all my effort to obtain it ".
"I follow the Spanish league and I have seen many games. The possibility of playing the Champions League with Osasuna was one of the main reasons that motivated me to come to Osasuna. I am happy to be the first Iranian player in Spain " said Nekounam.
Concerning his adaptation to the Primavera, the midfielder does not think it will be a problem, "I am a professional and I will try to adapt as rapidly as possible".
Sport Director, Juanjo Lorenzo, was delighted to conclude the capture and believes Nekounam will bolter his midfield.
"We propped up the center of the field. He is a talented player of international level. We know that he needs time to adapt but also we know that he will make a great contribution to this team".
Osasuna finished tied for fourth in points in the 2005-2006 La Liga season and will bid to qualify for the group stage of the 2006-2007 Champions League. The Basque side had been a regular middle to bottom finisher until last season when the club made a Champions League run that culminated in an impressive 2-1 victory over third place finisher Valencia in the club's final match.