Sheikh Ahmed pays off debt of jailed football star

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A day after an indebted former UAE football star made an appeal to help him out of jail, Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, chairman of the Olympic Committee, responded by pledging to settle the Dh2.69 million debt.

Adel Anas, a former goalkeeper in the UAE national football team, has been in prison in Dubai for defaulting on the debt accumulated over the past few years after signing cheques to enter partnership in two local ventures.

Anas appeared on the Dubai-based Arabic language daily 'Emarat Al Youm' on Thursday and appealed for help to pay his debt to regain his freedom.

“Sheikh Ahmed pledged to settle the whole debt owed by Anas….Sheikh Ahmed’s generous gesture was in response to Anas’s appeal for help through 'Emarat Al Youm,” the paper said on Thursday.

“Upon learning of Sheikh Ahmed’s gesture, Anas expressed delight and thanks for Sheikh Ahmed….he said the time he spent in jail would be a lesson for him.”

Anas was a key player in the Dubai-based Alwasl Club and a goalkeeper in the UAE football national team, having participated in several international matches between 1988 and 1996, including the 1990 world cup in Italy.

“I am having a very difficult time….I have nothing…the only thing that eases my pain in prison is my strong faith and good football memories,” he told 'Emarat Al Youm' before Sheikh Ahmed made the gesture.

The paper did not mention the prison term of the 44-year-old former footballer but said he was appealing for “all benevolent people to help him out.”

“I entered partnership in two companies with the aim of improving my income but I have not realized this ambition will land me in jail, take me away from my family and damage my relations with friends and all others.”

EARLIER STORY: UAE ex-football star in jail over Dh2.69m debt

A former UAE football star has been in prison after defaulting on a Dh2.69 million debt accumulated over the past few years when he entered a partnership with two companies in Dubai and had to sign cheques for the deal.

Adel Anas was a key player in the Dubai-based Alwasl Club and a goalkeeper in the UAE football national team, having participated in several international matches between 1988 and 1996, including the 1990 world cup in Italy.

“I am having a very difficult time….I have nothing…the only thing that eases my pain in prison is my strong faith and good football memories,” he told the Dubai-based Emirat Alyoum daily at the prison.

The paper did not mention the prison term of the 44-year-old former footballer but said he is appealing for “all benevolent people to help him out.”

“I entered partnership in two companies with the aim of improving my income but I have not realized this ambition will land me in jail, take me away from my family and damage my relations with friends and all others.”

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