Arabian Gulf League teams have commenced their preparations for the 2017/18 season. Teams kicked-off the first stage of their pre-seasons with the players gathering locally ahead of travelling for pre-season camps abroad where teams are set to play friendly matches in preparation for the new season which is set to witness intense competition between the 12 teams.
Last season's champions Al Jazira departed on Monday to their Netherlands training camp where they play five friendly matches in 25 days according to coach Henk ten Cate. Runners-up Al Wasl travel to the Spanish city of Malaga on the 3rd of August for their training camp under the tutelage of Argentine boss Rodolfo Arrubarrena who continues for a second season at the club.
The newly formed Shabab Al Ahli Dubai enter a new era under Romanian coach Cosmin Olaroiu who has selected The Netherlands as the team's destination for the pre-season.
Al Ain started preparations early under Croatian manager Zoran Mamic, before travelling to Austria for their training camp with a squad of 31 players. Al Ain take on a number of opponents in preparation of their important AFC Champions League quarter-final as well as next season's Arabian Gulf League.
In turn, Al Wahda have arrived to Cairo on Monday to participate in the Arab Clubs Championship which kicks-off on the 21st of July. The tournament plays a key role in the club's preparations for the tenth edition of the Arabian Gulf League. The Maroons gathered locally to start training under new Romanian coach Laurentiu Reghecampf. The club announced a 24-man squad to represent Al Wahda in the Arab Clubs Championship including summer signing Mourad Batna.
Al Nasr go into the new season under a new coach, Italian Cesare Prandelli opted for a two-stage training camp; first stage takes place in Slovenia between 20th of July and 2nd of August. The club then travels to Hungary where they remain until the 14th of August. Al Nasr play six matches during their pre-season.
On a related note, Al Dhafra renewed their faith in Syrian Coach Mohamed Quaid who had led the club to a record seventh place last season. Al Dhafra started their preparations at home and they are set to travel to Germany for the next stage of their training camp at the start of August.
Hatta, who delivered a good season last time out, retained Macedonian Coach Gjokica Hadzievski. The team also travels to Germany for the pre-season camp.
In Sharjah, Coach Jose Peseiro announced the players have gathered in the Smiling Emirate and will travel to Austria and Germany from the 25th of July for a seven-match preparation period.
Relegation survivors Dibba and Emirates were keen to start their new season preparations early to avoid a repeat of last season's struggles. Emirates Club travel to Serbia on the first of August for a 20-day training camp under Coach Ivan Hasek. Dibba, meanwhile, spend 25 days in Germany where they play five friendlies.
Arabian Gulf League newcomers Ajman will take their training camp to Germany after the completion of the first stage of training. Coach Ayman Al Ramadi continues at the helm after leading the club to promotion.