Palestinians Abroad: Tamburrini returns to hometown club

Pablo Tamburrini (L) in action vs UAE in September of 2015

Pablo Tamburrini who has been without a club since the beginning of 2017 has signed for Chilean side Deportivo San Antonio Unido. The signing is a sentimental one, as Tamburrini began his professional career with Las Lilas back in 2010.

Tamburrini eventually found his way to the Chilean top flight racking up 100 appearances between 2012 to 2015 with CD Palestino and Santiago Wanderers. Despite establishing himself as one of the most important national team players in 2015, Tamburrini struggled for playing time with San Luis- where he made only one start- before going on loan to Al-Bireh of the West Bank’s second division.

At the start of 2016, the midfielder was one of the headline names that joined defending WBPL champions Shabab Al-Khaleel, alongside Alexis Norambuena, Alaa Abu Saleh, Ashraf Nu’man, and Toufic Ali. A few weeks into the season however, the team began to implode as an evident lack of balance became apparent- when rumors of unpaid wages proved to be more than rumor- the title defence was all but done.

Under the specter of the failed project, Tamburrini left the club and left the country choosing to return to Chile to train on his own. It came at a steep cost, as Abdel Nasser Barakat chose to replace him in the starting line-up for all four matches in 2017.

After featuring in seven out of eight World Cup qualifiers, Tamburrini has yet to feature in Asian Cup qualifying.

The signing of Tamburrini is the second big splash SAU has made this offseason. It also brought home another native son, Humberto Suazo- who used a one year stint at the club to kick start a career that saw him lead the Chilean Primera, Copa Americana, Liga MX, and 2010 CONMEBOL World Cup Qualifying in scoring.

Las Lilas are currently competing in La Segunda- Chile’s 3rd Tier- but are expected to be amongst the favorites for promotion after finishing in fourth place last season. 

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