Football

Seol signs for Al Hilal

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Fulham's South Korea forward Seol Ki-hyeon has signed a six-month loan deal with Saudi Arabia League champions Al Hilal after passing a medical.

He has not featured for Fulham since October and manager Roy Hodgson made it clear the 30-year-old could leave Craven Cottage if a suitable offer was received.

Seol, who also had spells with Wolves and Reading, will join Al Hilal for six months with the option of a further 18-month contract.

Al Hilal have taken advantage of the rule which allows them to sign an additional Asian player to add to the three 'non-nationals' for the Asian Champions League which begins in March.

"I will try to put all the experience that I had from playing in Europe with Al Hilal," said Seol on Friday. "I want to win a lot of championships with the team whether locally or in Asia.

"The new format of having a fourth Asian player in the team tempted me to join Al Hilal and I've agreed to play for them after I talked with my former team-mate at Anderlecht, Christian Wilhelmsson, who is playing now with Al Hilal."

Al Hilal have been drawn in Group A of the Champions League alongside Uzbekistan's Pakhtakor, Iran's Saba Battery and UAE President's Cup winners Al Ahli.

"Seol is one of the best Asian players and it was one of the best options that was given to us by the club," said Al Hilal's Romanian coach Cosmin Olaroiu. "He will give a big push to the young players as he has a lot of experience."

Seol, who made his name after playing all six games for South Korea during the 2002 World Cup, arrived at Craven Cottage in the summer of 2007 from Reading, where he made 30 appearances in the Royals' first season in the top flight.

He signed a three-year contract at Fulham but failed to score in the 12 appearances he made in his debut season. Seol's only Fulham goal came in the Cottagers' opening match of this season against Hull.

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