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Zayed: I must make decision


Eamon Zayed. Picture: Pat Murphy / SPORTSFILE

Eamon Zayed. Picture: Pat Murphy / SPORTSFILE

Eamon Zayed. Picture: Pat Murphy / SPORTSFILE

SHAMROCK ROVERS and Sligo Rovers are waiting for an answer from Eamon Zayed as the Dublin-born Libya international tries to make up his mind on his next career move.

The striker has finished up with his previous club in Iran and is now a free agent. He has offers on the table from clubs in Iran and Libya but Maltese side Valetta have also made an offer and are pressing Zayed to make a decision.

But Sligo Rovers and Shamrock Rovers are also eager to land the former Drogheda United and Derry City man, and with the deadline for signing players ahead of this summer's European campaigns looming, the clubs want Zayed to make a decision.

"I know I am lucky to have a few offers on the table but I need to make a decision in the next few days," Zayed said.

"There has been contact from Sligo and Shamrock Rovers, I am happy to sit down with both clubs and listen to what they have to say, and I am aware that Sligo are in Europe in the next few weeks so they will want an answer soon.

"Valetta in Malta are also keen and they want an answer soon as they are in the first qualifying round of the Europa League, and the first leg of that is very soon, so I need to decide what move is best for me now," added Zayed.

"I always loved playing in the League of Ireland so I'd have no issue in going back to play in the league again.

"It's still not ideal, the fact that you are out of contract when the season is over at the end of October and then out of work for two or three months isn't great, especially when most players aren't able to earn enough over the season to see them through those few months and through Christmas.

"I think that to be a professional footballer you should have your mind and focus on that, and that's hard to do when you are effectively out of work at the end of October."

A former Ireland U21 cap, Zayed made his competitive debut for Libya in a World Cup qualifier, against DR Congo earlier this month, and the Libyans are keen to bring Zayed to their domestic league, which is being reinstated after a two-year absence owing to political instability.



A club in Benghazi are trying to sign Zayed but that city was the scene of political disturbances in recent weeks, forcing the Libyan Football Federation to move a World Cup game from there to the capital Tripoli, and those scenes of violence could also affect Zayed's decision.

Zayed is still on course for a tilt at the World Cup in Brazil next year, as a draw in their final group game, away to Cameroon in September, will be enough for Libya to top their group and advance to the play-off round.

"I finally got to make my competitive debut, against DR Congo, and even though we only drew 0-0 it was a great experience, and we then went on and won our next game, we beat Togo 2-0 but I didn't play in that one," says Zayed.

"We have a good chance, certainly a better chance than Ireland have as things stand, if we get a draw in Cameroon in the next game we're into the play-offs so going to Brazil is still there for me and for the team."