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11 December 2023

English clubs in transfer flurry as window closes

Queens Park Rangers confirmed the signing of French striker Djibril Cisse. (FILE)


A flurry of last-minute transfers were being brokered across English football Tuesday as clubs moved to bolster their squads in the final few hours of the January window.

Premier League side Sunderland completed a loan deal for out-of-favour Manchester City defender Wayne Bridge while struggling Queens Park Rangers confirmed the signing of French striker Djibril Cisse.

Cisse, who previously played for Lazio, has signed a two-and-a-half year deal with QPR who were also being linked with a £5 million ($7.42 million) move for Fulham striker Bobby Zamora.
"I rate Djibril very, very highly," Rangers boss Mark Hughes said. "I've watched him for many years and always been impressed by what he brings to the table. He was desperate to come here once we showed our interest in him and we can't wait to get the best out of him."

Meanwhile Everton confirmed a fee had been agreed with Scottish giants Rangers for Croatian striker Nikica Jelavic.
The 26-year-old international was seen at Everton's Finch Farm training complex where he was reportedly discussing personal terms and undergoing a medical following agreement of an £8 million fee.
"Everton can confirm a fee has been agreed with Rangers for the transfer of Croatian international Nikica Jelavic," Everton confirmed on their website before the Toffees' 1-0 victory over Manchester City.
Jelavic has scored 36 goals in 55 matches for Rangers since joining from Rapid Vienna in 2010 but had been keen to pursue a career in English football.
Meanwhile Manchester United were set to finally part company with youngster Ravel Morrison, the highly rated 18-year-old youth player who has failed to establish himself at Old Trafford.
Morrison is regarded as one of the most promising youth players ever to pass through the Manchester United ranks but the club has reportedly lost patience amid ongoing problems in his private life.
Morrison was undergoing a medical with Championship side West Ham with a deal set to be concluded later Wednesday.
"The deal is not quite done yet but we are hopeful it will be completed," West Ham manager Sam Allardyce told the London Evening Standard.
"Ravel is a talented lad and if he really wants to be a player then we will help him as much as we can along the way.
"Perhaps a change of environment will be beneficial to him and help him make that step up to first team football quicker than perhaps would have been the case at Manchester United. There is no doubt he has exceptional talent."
Chelsea signed Belgium international Kevin de Bruyne from Genk although the midfielder will spend the rest of the season on loan with the Belgian club, the London club confirmed.
The 20-year-old's transfer deadline day capture means he becomes the latest Belgian player on Chelsea's books, joining compatriots Romelu Lukaku and Thibaut Courtois, currently on loan at Spanish side Atletico Madrid.
Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill meanwhile said he hoped the capture of Bridge would solve the club's long-running vacancy at left-back.
The 31-year-old has played only 58 times for City since joining from Chelsea in 2009, and has appeared for the club just once this season.
"I'm hoping that with Wayne's undoubted experience and ability he can be a big help to the team until the end of the season," Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill told the club's official website.
Elsewhere West Brom signed defender Liam Ridgewell from Midlands rivals Birmingham, now in the second-tier Championship, for an undisclosed fee.
Accounting giants Deloitte meanwhile reported in an initial analysis of the January window that transfer spending had reached £35 million as of 0945 GMT Tuesday, compared to £90 million at the same stage last year.