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Egli signs new contract before departing on loan to Scotland

Manager explains decision to let midfielder gain more first-team experience elsewhere

20 July 2018

Egli Kaja has signed a new deal at AFC Wimbledon, but he will gain more first-team experience in the Scottish Premiership with Livingston during 2018/19.

Subject to international clearance, Egli, who turns 21 later this month, will join the West Lothian club on a season-long loan deal.

Egli has made 27 appearances in all competitions for Wimbledon since making his first-team debut back in October 2015 at Luton Town. Neal Ardley believes that the loan deal is exactly what the right midfielder needs at this stage of his career.

"We decided at the end of last season that we had a few players that would benefit from a loan move and Egli was one of those," said Neal. "Egli's agent came to us about a possible loan and I think the important thing is that we look at where players are in their careers. Since he came out of the academy, it has taken Egli about two or three years to break into the first-team. He had a little bit of game-time last season in terms of getting in and around it, so he needs to really try and get a full season of 30-plus games under his belt. The aim of the loan is to try and expose him to that at a time when we are not sure if that will happen with us.

"We hope that next year we will get a player back who will be totally ready to be that 30 games a season wide right player for us. It's important when you put players out on loan that they are playing at the highest level possible and Egli needs a full season of playing regularly. He is one of our players that we think has a good chance. If we loan him out and he gets that then maybe the following season will be one when he features more prominently."

The right midfielder, who was born in Prelez, Kosovo, moved to England when he was three and he is eligible to play for Albania with his parents and grandparents born in that country.

Egli, who joined Wimbledon at the age of 11, progressed through our academy before signing his first professional contract in 2015.

Our manager talked in more depth about the decision to send Egli out on loan during an interview for our You Tube channel. Click on the link below to watch the interview.

 

All at AFC Wimbledon wish Egli every success in his loan move to Livingston.


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