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50-50: Liverpool vs. Real Madrid

Champions League 1 day ago
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May 21, 2012

Abbas wants A-League excitement at Syd FC

Sydney FC's newest signing, Ali Abbas, feels he can bring the much-needed excitement factor back to the A-League club.

The former Newcastle Jets forward has signed a two-year contract with the Sky Blues, after spending the past three seasons with the Jets.

Sydney's new head coach Ian Crook swooped on the Iraqi international after he was axed by the Jets last week.

"I think I will bring excitement," said Abbas, who was a member of Iraq's 2007 Asian Cup-winning team.

"Don't get me wrong - they have quality players here and I'm very excited to work with them and hopefully I can add more to them.

"Sydney FC is a big club in Australia and, if you want to play for a big club, you have to be positive and work hard all the time."

Abbas, 25, is the first player to join the Sky Blues since Crook was handed the reins earlier this month and the Englishman has no doubt he will be a crowd pleaser.

"Once I knew I'd got the job, he was someone that I knew would be a great fit for the way I want to play," Crook said on Tuesday.

"He's somebody I believe will get bums off their seats and standing up and applauding the things he does ... so hopefully he'll be a big hit."

Abbas' signing is the first blow in what promises to be an ongoing tussle to snare players with the new western Sydney side coached by Tony Popovic.

"It's great to have rivalry now," Crook said.

"We're happy we've got him. If western Sydney were interested and we've got him instead of them - brilliant!

"But I'm sure there'll be some they get that we'll miss out on.

"This will be an ongoing thing but I'm not going to fight Popa over it - he's bigger than me."

Various names have been thrown up as possible marquee men for the Sky Blues but Crook admits snaring either of the latest suggestions - England international Michael Owen or Brazilian star Ronaldinho - might be a stretch.

"Two individuals like that would excite any team but we have to be realistic," Crook said.

"We've got restraints to work with and a budget. If they were prepared to fit into our budget, which is doubtful, then that would be great."

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