On the move - February's African transfers

Alexander N'Doumbou
Alexander N'Doumbou, a former Gabon international, has acquired Chinese citizenship and can no longer play for The Panthers.

The transfer windows may well be shut for many European leagues but African players are still on the move elsewhere in the world.

Below are the main transfers involving African footballers in February.

27 February:

Former Gabon international Alexander N'Doumbou has joined Chinese Super League club Shanghai Shenhua on a free transfer after acquiring Chinese citizenship.

The 27-year old, who will be playing with his new Chinese name Qian Jiegei, last featured for Bulgarian top flight league side FK Vereya where he made 15 appearances this season.

The 2019 Chinese Super league kicks off on Friday with his new club hosting rivals Shanghai SIPG.

N'Doumbou, who was born in Gabon to a Chinese mother and Gabonese father, had to denounce his Gabonese citizenship to be able to apply for and obtain a Chinese passport as required by Chinese citizenship law.

It means N'Doumbou cannot continue to play for Gabon as long as he remains a Chinese citizen.

"Life is made of choices and I made mine," N'Doumbou wrote on his Facebook page.

"I owe nothing to anyone except my parents and God. A new chapter opens for me in China. This is an opportunity that I have seized to evolve in my mother's home country and that I fully assume.

"For those who will be sceptical about the turn of my career, it is your right. I'm proud to be able to move to the Chinese Super League," he added.

N'Doumbou represented Gabon at the 2011 Africa Under-23 Nations Cup in Morocco where they emerged as champions.

He then played at the 2012 London Olympics alongside Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, and went on to feature in three senior matches for the Gabon national team.

26 February:

Nigeria and Reading forward Sone Aluko has moved to Chinese Super League side Beijing Renhe on loan for the rest of 2019.

The 30-year-old has scored one goal in 20 matches for the Royals this season, and made 60 appearances since his £7.5m transfer from Fulham in 2017.

Aluko, who has seven caps for the Super Eagles, has been a sporadic starter since Jose Gomes' arrival as manager in December.

His new club, who finished eighth in the Super League last season, begin their new campaign on 1 March.

Fellow Nigerian Alhaji Gero has made a dramatic return to Swedish club Östersunds FK on a short-term deal after seven months at Iranian side Esteghlal FC.

The 25-year-old striker, who left Östersunds for Iran in August, made eight appearances for Esteghal before his three-year contract was mutually terminated by the Tehran based outfit.

The former Nigeria youth international scored six goals in 55 appearances during his last spell at the club and is excited about his return to Sweden.

"ÖFK has always meant a lot to me because this is the club where I developed myself and my game, and it made the player I am today," he told the club website.external-link

Gero arrived at Swedish club Östers IF in summer 2013 from Enugu Rangers and had a short stint at Norwegian side Viborg FF before moving to Östersunds in January 2016.

25 February:

Ivory Coast international striker Lacina Traore has signed for Hungarian top-tier side Újpest on a short-term contract.

Traore, 28, was a free agent after leaving French club Monaco in August.

Ujpest becomes his ninth club in nine years, after spells in Romania, Russia, England, Spain and France.

Traore, who has 13 caps for Ivory Coast, made a scoring debut for his country in a 3-0 friendly win against Austria in November 2012.

He was also part of the Ivory Coast squad that won the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon, but only played the final moments of the semi-final win over DR Congo, coming on as a substitute.

24 February:

Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo) goalkeeper Parfait Mandanda has joined Romania's Dinamo Bucharest on loan from Belgian club Charleroi until the end of the season.

The 29-year-old is hoping to gain regular playing time at his new club after featuring only three times in the Belgian top tier league for Charleroi this season.

Born in France, Parfait is one of three brothers who are goalkeepers. The others are Riffi Mandanda who plays for French third tier side Boulogne and French international Steve Mandanda who is currently with Marseille.

Parfait featured for the French under-21 national team before switching allegiance to DR Congo in 2008.

He made his international debut for The Leopards against Gabon in March 2008 and has made 17 appearances so far.

21 February:

Romain Saiss
Morocco international Romain Saiss joined Wolves in August 2016 on a four-year deal from Ligue 1 side Angers.

Moroccan international Romain Saiss has signed a one year contract extension with Wolverhampton Wanderers to extend his stay with the Premier league club until 2021.

The 28-year old, who can operate as a defender as well as a midfilelder has featured in 13 Premier league games so far this season, scoring two goals.

Saiss joined Wolves in August 2016 on a four-year deal from Ligue 1 side Angers when the club were in the English Championship.

He helped them gain promotion to the Premier league last season after netting four goals in 42 appearances, a factor acknowledged by the club's sporting director, Kevin Thelwell:

"Romain has been an important player for the football club, particularly over the past 18 months, and played a huge role in achieving promotion to the Premier League," Thelwell told the club's website. external-link

Born in France, Saiss chose to represent Morocco in 2012 and made his international debut in a 1-0 defeat to Togo in a friendly match that same year.

Saiss was part of the Atlas Lions' squad at last year's World Cup in Russia, featuring against both Iran and Spain, and has also played in four of Morocco's 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.

Ghana forward Emmanuel Boateng has joined Chinese Super League club Dalian Yifang from Spanish side Levante.

The details of the 22-year-old's contract have not been disclosed.

"Levante and Dalian Yifang have reached an agreement for the transfer of player Emmanuel Okyere Boateng," Levante said in a statement.external-link

"We would like to thank Emmanuel Boateng for his work and commitment during all this time and wish him luck in his new professional stage."

In return, Boateng expressed his gratitude to the La Liga club, who he joined in 2017.

"I want to thank God for how far he has brought me, and also many thanks to Levante UD for the excellent time we shared," he tweeted. external-link

20 February:

Czech Republic second tier club SC Znojmo FK have signed Liberia's Van-Dave Harmon for an undisclosed fee.

Harmon moves as a free agent from Latvian top tier club FK Metta/LU.

He scored two goals in 12 Virsliga appearances, having joined from Senegal's Diambars on 22 July 2018.

The 23-year-old, who played for Liberia at under-20 and under-23 levels, has five senior caps.

19 February:

Nigeria's Junior Ajayi has signed a contract extension with Egypt's Al Ahly until 2022.

Ajayi helped Ahly win the 2016/17 and 2017/18 Premier League titles.

He joined Ahly from Tunisia's CS Sfaxien in the summer of 2016 for a reported US$2 million.

A knee injury picked up in an African Champions League match against Botswana's Township Rollers last July restricted Ajayi to eight games across all competitions this season.

South Africa's May Mahlangu has joined Kazakhstan side FC Ordabasy on loan from Bulgaria side Ludogorets Razgrad for the remainder of 2019.

The 29-year-old midfielder has had spells in Sweden, Turkey, Belgium, Romania and Bulgaria since leaving South African in 2008.

18 February:

Nigerian striker Daniel Chima has returned to China by joining second-tier side ‪Heilongjiang Lava Spring‬ on a season-long loan from Norway's Molde.

The 27-year-old spent two seasons at Shanghai Shenxin and returned to Europe with Polish club Legia Warsaw in January 2017 before returning to join Molde a year later.

He scored 50 goals in 162 appearances across two spells with Molde, who he first joined in 2010.

16 February:

Morocco international winger Mimoun Mahi will join Swiss club FC Zurich in the summer.

The 24-year-old whose contract at Dutch side FC Groningen will expire at the end of the season has signed a deal until 2022.

Born in the Netherlands, he played for the Dutch national side at youth level before switching to Morocco.

He scored on his international debut for the Atlas Lions in the 6-0 win over Mali in a 2018 World Cup qualifier in September 2017.

Mimoun Mahi
Mimoun Mahi scored on his international debut for Morocco in 2017, in a 6-0 win over Mali

15 February:

Derby County have signed former Hibernian defender Efe Ambrose until the end of the season.

The 30-year-old Nigeria international was a free agent after leaving the Scottish Premiership side last month.

Former Benin international Razak Omotoyossi has returned home and joined top-tier side Union Sportive Sèmè (USS) Krake, signing a one-year deal.

The 33-year-old striker has been without a club since leaving Moroccan side Safi in 2015.

The much-travelled Omotoyossi is his nation's joint top-scorer alongside Stephane Sessegnon with 21 goals.

Unattached Tunisia international midfielder Anis Ben-Hatira has joined Hungarian top-flight club Budapest Honved on an 18-month deal.

The 30-year-old, who was released by Esperance in May 2018, having previously played at German clubs Hertha Berlin and Hamburg.

Another free agent Carthage Eagle on the move is Bilel Mohsni who has been snapped up by Greek division two side FC Panachaiki.

The 31-year-old defender who left Dundee United last summer also signed an 18-month deal.

He has played for French club Angers, Etoile du Sahel and Scottish giants Glasgow Rangers.

French club Lyon have confirmed the loan signing of Ghanaian midfielder Emmanuel Danso until the end of the season.

The 18-year-old joins from Accra Sporting Club on a six-month loan, with an option of for Lyon to buy the player after that.

"Emmanuel Danso will strengthen our under-19 squad as well as participating in the National 2 (the fourth tier in France), he is also eligible to play in the the Uefa Youth League starting with the game on February 20th in the Czech Republic," Lyon announced in a statement.

14 February:

Nigeria striker Odion Ighalo
Nigeria striker Odion Ighalo was the second highest scorer in last season's Chinese Super League

Nigeria's Odion Ighalo has reunited with former Watford manager Quique Sanchez Flores at Chinese Super League (CSL) side Shanghai Shenhua.

The 29-year-old striker moves to the three-time CSL champions on a three-year deal after leaving relegated rivals Changun Yatai

"It's important to sort my club future and I'm happy that it comes with a great opportunity to play under coach Quique again," Ighalo told BBC Sport.

13 February:

Nigeria Under-17 World Cup winner Orji Okonkwo
Nigeria Under-17 World Cup winner Orji Okonkwo has played for Bologna and Brescia in Italy

Nigeria Under-17 World Cup winner Orji Okonkwo has joined Major League Soccer (MLS) club Montreal Impact on loan from Italian side Bologna, until the end of the 2019 season.

The 21-year-old striker only played 268 minutes in eight appearances for Bologna this season.

"He's a strong and quick forward who has an interesting margin of progression. I would like to welcome him to the team," Impact head coach Rémi Garde told the club website.external-link

Okonkwo sealed a long-term deal with Bologna from FC Abuja Academy in August 2016 shortly after he helped Nigeria win a record fifth Under-17 World Cup title.

10 February:

Central African Republic (CAR) international Eloge Enza-Yamissi has joined French fourth-tier side Annecy until the end of the season.

The 36-year old defensive midfielder had been without a club since leaving Ligue 2 Valenciennes last summer.

Enza-Yamissi has made 18 appearances for CAR, including captaining the side on several occasions as well playing alongside his brother Manasseh too.

9 February:

Cheikh Mbengue
Senegal defender Cheikh Mbengue has 31 caps for the Teranga Lions

Senegal international Cheikh Mbengue has left French club Saint-Étienne for Chinese Super League outfit Shenzhen FC.

Details and the duration of the 30-year-old left-back's deal have not been disclosed.

Born in France, he played for his country of birth at youth level before switching allegiance to Senegal.

He has 31 caps for the Teranga Lions and represented the West African nation at three Africa Cup of Nations tournaments in 2012, 2015 and 2017.

8 February:

Burkina Faso international Aristide Bance has returned home to play for top-flight league Sports Union of Armed Forces (USFA) after 15 years playing abroad.

The 34-year old striker has joined the Ouagadougou-based club until the end of the season after terminating his contract with Egyptian side Al Masry.

Bance has been on the side lines since May last year as he was recovered from Achilles tendon injury.

Former Algerian international Djamel Mesbah has found himself in the lower division of Swiss football as he has joined fourth-tier side Etoile Carouge.The 35-year-old defender has previously played in Serie A for AC Milan, Sampdoria, Parma, Livono and Lecce as well as at five clubs in the Swiss Super League.He made 36 appearances for Algeria, including matches at both the 2010 and 2014 World Cup finals.

Senegal striker Aliou Badji has joined Austrian giants Rapid Vienna on a three-and-a-half-year deal from Swedish club Djurgardens.

The 21-year old, former under-17 and under-20 international, spent two years with Djurgardens featuring in 48 league matches and scoring 11 goals.

He helped Senegal to finish as runners-up in the 2017 Under-20 Africa Cup of Nations in Zambia and also featured in the Under-20 World Cup the same year.

7 February:

Congo Brazzaville international Ferebory Dore has returned for a second spell at Bulgarian club Botev Plovdiv, who he joins until the end of season with an option to extend the contract.

The 30-year-old terminated his contract with France's Ligue 1 side Anger, who he has not played for this season, by mutual consent.

He has 34 caps and scored 10 goals for Congo since his debut in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Uganda on in February 2012.

Nigerian midfielder Reuben Gabriel
Nigerian midfielder Reuben Gabriel has played in Scotland, Belgium, Portugal and Slovakia

Nigeria international midfielder Reuben Gabriel is the latest African to move to Saudi Arabia by joining ambitious second tier outfit Najran SC.‬

‪The 28-year-old, who has previously played in Scotland, Belgium, Portugal and Slovakia, joins as a free agent after leaving Finnish club KuPS in December 2018.‬

‪He has made 12 appearances for the Super Eagles and was part of their squads as they won the 2013 African Cup of Nations and reached the last 16 at the 2014 World Cup.

Belarusian top-tier side Dinamo Minsk have confirmed the signing of Ghana international Sulley Muntari's younger brother Sulley Muniru.

The 26-year-old, who has not been capped by Ghana at senior level, joins the seven times Balarusian champions as free agent.

He recently terminated his contract with Turkish Super Lig side Yeni Malatyaspor, where he spent just five months and made only five appearances.

Two Cameroon under-20 internationals have joined French Ligue 1 sides from local clubs.

Stephane Zobo, 18, who scored 2 goals in 3 games for at the 2017 Under-17 Africa Cup of Nations has joined Toulouse on a four-year deal from Azur Fa.

Moise Sakava, who is also 18, has signed a five-year contract with Stade Reims from Coton Sport of Garoua where he won the 2018 Cameroon Elite 1 Championship.

Algerian international Liassine Cadamuro has joined struggling top-flight Romanian club Concordia Chiajna.

The 30-year-old defender made the move after terminating his contract with Spanish second division side Nastic Tarragona by mutual consent.

His time in Spain included four seasons in La Liga for Real Sociedad before stints with Mallorca and Osasuna.

He was part of Algeria's 23-man squad at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, but did not make an appearance.

6 February:

Guinea's Florentin Pogba
Guinea's Florentin Pogba has joined MLS champions Atlanta United

Veteran Ghana international midfielder Anthony Annan has joined Israeli club Beitar Jerusalem on a six-month deal as a free agent.

The 32-year-old's contract includes the option to extend by a year.

It's his 12th professional club in a career that includes nine in Europe, where he has had stints in Norway, Germany, Netherland, Spain and Finland.

His 64 Black Stars caps include the four Africa Cup of Nations and the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

At club level, he has three Norwegian League titles, two Finnish titles and won both the German Cup and Super Cup with Schalke in 2011.

Morocco under-17 international Chams Eddine Limour, 17, has signed his first professional contract with Spanish La Liga side Levante on a six-month deal.

Levante have the option to extend the contract for the player, who moves from Paris Saint-Germain's under-17 team, for a further two years.

"It is with great pride that I join Levante by signing my first professional contract," Limour tweeted.

Guinea international Florentin Pogba says he's ready for a new adventure at Major Soccer League (MLS) champions Atlanta United.

The 28-year-old defender, who is the older brother of Manchester United's Paul Pogba, joins as a free agent.

His move comes after a registration hitch meant he was unable to sign for Spanish second-tier club Elche.

5 February:

Major League Soccer (MLS) side Real Salt Lake have signed Liberia international Sam Johnson from Norwegian club Valerenga on a two-year deal.

His new club say the transfer will be finalized after the issuance of an international transfer certificate and the relevant visa to play in the USA.

"I am ready for a new challenge in MLS. A lot of clubs came for me but Real Salt Lake put more effort than the other clubs," Johnson told the club's website.

The 25-year old has 13 international caps and two goals for Liberia.

Senegal goalkeeper Edouard Mendy
Goalkeeper Edouard Mendy made his international debut for Senegal in November 2018 against Equatorial Guinea

Spain's Real Betis failed to agree a loan deal for Algeria striker Islam Slimani with Turkish side Fenerbahce as his parent club Leicester City ruled out a return to England.

Fenerbahce have also rejected a switch to China for the 30-year-old, who has scored just four goals in 24 appearances this season.

The player was keen to move to stake a claim for a spot in the Algeria squad for this year's Nations Cup.

"Slimani wanted to leave. We held talks with Betis. After we considered, we decided for him to stay until the end of the season but he will be with us," Fenerbahce vice president Semih Ozsoy told news outlet De Marke Sports.

Senegal international goalkeeper Edouard Mendy is 'excited' to have extended his Reims contract by a further two years.

The new deal keeps the 26-year-old with the promoted French Ligue 1 club until summer 2022.

He has played all 23 league matches and produced 10 clean sheets this season.

"I'm very excited to extend my career with a club that makes me feel very much at home," the France-born Mendy told BBC Sport.

"So many good things have happened here because of the opportunity at this club I became an international with Senegal.

"I want to continue to give my best and together with the rest of the squad, defend the colours of the club and lift it higher."

4 February:

Tunisia's Amine Chermiti
Tunisia's Amine Chermiti has played in Germany, Switzerland, France and Kuwait

Former Cameroon captain Stephane Mbia has returned to play in China and signed for newly promoted Super League side Wuhan Zall.

The 32-year-old midfielder turned defender has been a free agent since ending his contract with French club Toulouse by mutual consent in January.

Norwegian top-flight club Mjondalen IF have signed experienced Nigeria international defender Akeem Latifu.

The 29-year-old joins his fifth club in the Scandinavian country as a free agent on a deal until the end of 2020.

The right-back has been without a club since leaving Sogndal in December.

Latifu's performance at Hungarian side Budapest Honvéd last year had put him on the radar of Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr as the German struggles to find a long-term solution to the troubled right back position.

He has two caps for Nigeria at senior level and played all four matches for the Flying Eagles at the 2007 Under-20 World Cup in Canada.

Tunisia striker Amine Chermiti has joined Al-Fayha in Saudi Arabia from Etoile du Sahel on a one-year deal.

The 31-year-old returns to Saudi Arabia having spent a period on loan at Al Ittihad Jeddah from German side Hertha Berlin in 2009 and 2010.

3 February:

Saudi Arabian side Al Shabab have signed Gambia international forward Bubacarr Trawally on a three-and-a-half-year deal.

Trawally joins the Riyadh-based club from Danish side Vejle Boldklub, having played extensively in China.

2 February:

Tunisian defender Jasser Khmiri has signed for Vancouver-based MLS club Whitecaps FC, becoming the first Tunisian player to feature in Major League Soccer.

The 21-year-old centre-back has moved from Stade Tunisien on a three-year deal with an option to extend the agreement for another year.

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