Iraqi football stars in Korek Telecom advert


Celtic offer trial to Al Ahli midfielder Humum Tariq

by Barnaby Read

Al Ahli’s 18-year-old Iraqi midfielder, Humam Tariq, is the subject of a trial offer from Scottish champions Celtic, according to his agent.

Tariq, his country’s youngest international, is yet to play for the Red Knights having only signed for the Arabian Gulf League title holders at the end of last season.

Despite his lack of a single appearance for the Dubai club, his talent has not put off potential suitors following a string of impressive performances for Iraq in his fifteen caps to date.

Not only that, his performances in the Iraqi Premier League have been startling.

Tariq managed 21 goals in 46 appearances during his three years with former club Al-Quwa Al-Jawiya, form that alerted the attention of Ahli boss Cosmin Olaroiu.

“Celtic sent a request to me and Al Ahli,” Tariq’s agent Najim Abed Mohamad told Sport360°. “They want to invite him for a trial.”

Tariq’s Celtic adventure is certainly not set in stone and Olaroiu will assess the player during a pre-season training camp in Italy before making any decision on the player’s future.

“He signed a two-year contract with Al Ahli who are now going to take him to Italy for the manager to have a look at him,” added Mohamad. “After that, (Olaroiu) will decide on his future.”

Tariq was named Iraqi Player of the Year in 2012 at just 16 and went on to play for Iraq in the final of the 2013 Gulf Cup of Nations where his side was defeated by the UAE.

New of Celtic’s interest was first reported by Scottish newspaper, The Scotsman who even quoted Olaroiu as saying: “We have received a formal offer from Celtic. We travel to a training camp in Germany this month. During this time, we will sit down and assess Humam’s situation and decide whether we will accept the offer from the Scottish club.”