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West Brom sign Brown Ideye for club record fee

Brown Ideye
Brown Ideye has signed from Dynamo Kiev Credit: PA

West Brom have announced the club-record signing of Nigeria striker Brown Ideye from Dynamo Kiev.

The 25-year-old has signed a three-year contract, with an option for a fourth, and moves for an undisclosed fee in excess of that paid for Stephane Sessegnon when the midfielder moved from Sunderland last year.

Albion head coach, Alan Irvine, said:

Brown is a quality striker and I'm looking forward to working with him.

He's a strong, quick, powerful player who likes to get in behind defences and has plenty of Champions League and international experience.

Ideye has been handed the number nine shirt at the Hawthorns and will join up with the squad when they return from a pre-season training camp in California.

He scored 34 goals in three seasons in Ukraine, having previously played for Sochaux and Neuchatel Xamax after starting his career in his homeland with Ocean Boys.

He has won 24 caps for Nigeria, scoring five times including in the semi-final as the Super Eagles won last year's African Nations Cup.

Derby County sign George Thorne from West Brom

Derby County has confirmed signing of George Thorne from West Bromwich Albion.

The 21-year-old midfielder has joined the club on a four-year deal after an undisclosed fee was agreed with the Baggies.

Thorne was identified as one of Derby’s top transfer targets this summer after he impressed during a loan spell with the Rams last season.

He made 12 appearances in total and scored twice.

Head Coach Steve McClaren, said:

We’re really pleased that George Thorne has joined us on a permanent basis.

I am sure the fans will be delighted to welcome him back and we’re equally pleased that he sees Derby County as the right place for him at this point of his career.

He was one of the first players Ispoke about with our Head of Football Operations Chris Evans when he arrived inNovember, and we were well aware of his qualities when he joined us on loan in January.

After being patient in waiting for his chance in the side, he showed what he could do on the pitch. His level of performance was excellent.


Martin O'Neill 'confident' Roy Keane will benefit from his dual role

The Republic of Ireland boss Martin O'Neill is confident his number two Roy Keane will benefit from his joint role as Aston Villa's assistant manager.

O'Neill told the Irish Independent:

My view is if it doesn't impinge on the job here with Ireland, then in actual fact it will end up being good for him.I know that if we couldn't have made it work, he wouldn't have taken the job in the first place.If his commitments to us - both on the commercial side and certainly from my viewpoint in terms of the time working with players - is not impinged at all, then I'm happy for it to go ahead, genuinely happy.Villa have agreed to give him all that time with us and therefore I don't really have a problem with it.

– Martin O'Neill, Republic of Ireland manager

West Brom sign Belgium defender Pocognoli

Sebastien Pocognoli has signed from Hannover 96 Credit: West Bromwich Albion

West Bromwich Albion have confirmed the signing of Belgium international defender Sébastien Pocognoli from Hannover 96.

The 26-year-old left-back has become the Baggies’ fourth summer signing on an undisclosed fee. He has signed a three-year deal, plus a year’s option in the club’s favour, after agreeing personal terms and passing a medical.

Pocognoli, who has 12 Belgium caps, narrowly missed out on a place in his country’s Brazil-bound World Cup squad after injury saw him miss the final six weeks of last season.

The 6ft player has top-flight experience in Belgium, Holland and Germany following spells with Genk, AZ Alkmaar, Standard Liege and Hannover.

Pocognoli will meet his new team-mates for the first time when he reports for pre-season training on Monday.

Coventry City owners say they are to communicate more with fans

The owners of Coventry City have posted an open letter to supporters on the club's website, telling them that the biggest problem in the row over the Ricoh Arena is not rent. They say it is the club's access to matchday revenues.

Part of the open letter from Joy Seppala and Tim Fisher reads:

...We understand that you want to hear from us about what is going on. You want the Sky Blues to return to play home games in Coventry. We do too. But any return to the Ricoh Arena has to be driven by Financial Fair Play. We want what is best for the club for the long term and this must be built on financial stability.

We appreciate that some of you have pledged to pay the rent for the Ricoh Arena. We are grateful. But unfortunately the rent is not the biggest problem. We have always been happy to pay a competitive rent but we need to access the match day revenues.

The club’s proposal is very simple. We are happy to pay a rent which is competitive in League One. But, we must have access to our very own match day revenues. That is, under Financial Fair Play Rules, all the business that is generated on a match day is managed by the club so that 60p in every £1 generated can be allocated to Steven Pressley to spend on improving and growing the calibre of the first team squad with promotion to the Championship and beyond in mind...

SISU also promised to share more about what is going on behind the scenes than they have previously, and communicate with supporters.

...We know that reconciliation will need effort from all sides but we will do all we can as long as it does not jeopardise the long term future of the club. We know we haven’t done enough to communicate with you. We want this to change. We promise to share as much as we can about what is going on.

We are all passionate about the club becoming an essential part of the Coventry City community, determined to secure its long term future and build a team that continues to make us all proud for generations to come.?


Barcelona to train at St George's Park

The four-times European Champions will train the home of English football Credit: ITV News

Barcelona's star-studded squad will become the latest side to train at St. George's Park.

The four-times European champions will arrive at the National Football Centre on 28 July and stay until 2 August.

It will be one of the first times Barca have got together under new coach Luis Enrique, with Lionel Messi, Neymar and Andres Iniesta likely to be in action.

Alexis Sanchez celebrates with Dani Alves, Lionel Messi and Busquets after scoring against Atletico Madrid Credit: PA

St. George's Park's managing director, Julie Harrington, said:

I am absolutely delighted that FC Barcelona have decided to join us for their pre-season preparations later this month.

This is hugely exciting news for St. George's Park and The FA, and it is a real pleasure to be able to have one of European football's most successful clubs train at our facility.

We look forward to welcoming the players and staff, and helping ensure their visit with us is both an enjoyable and memorable experience.

Paul Lambert: Keane to be a 'great asset' to Aston Villa

The Aston Villa manager, Paul Lambert, says his new Assistant Manager, Roy Keane, will be a 'great asset' to the club.

He told the club website:

Roy has a great knowledge of football, on the coaching side as well, and he'll be a great asset and a big help to everybody here at Aston Villa Football Club.

I'm really looking forward to working with him and I'm delighted that he's here.

As a player, he was one of the most accomplished in the history of the Barclays Premier League and he's brought that experience gained over many years into his career in coaching and management. The players will love working with him.

Although we never played together, we competed against one another and he's someone for whom I have a lot of time and respect. He has worked under some great managers, some of the most successful in the game, and he'll be a great help to myself as well.

Roy brought Sunderland up out of the Championship and into the Premier League, he gained further experience at Ipswich - where we were close rivals while I was manager at Norwich - and he's now working at international level as assistant manager with the Republic of Ireland.

All of that experience and knowledge along with the qualities he has as a longstanding, leading professional in the game means he will bring a lot to the table. We're delighted to have him here.

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