Chelsea signs Azpilicueta from Marseille
Chelsea completed Friday the 6.5 million pounds ($10.3 million) signing of Spanish defender Cesar Azpilicueta from Marseille, bringing the Champions League winners’ total summer spending to over 70 million pounds.
Azpilicueta began his career in his native Spain with Osasuna, and was part of the Spanish squad that participated at this summer’s Olympic Games.
“Chelsea are delighted to announce the signing of Cesar Azpilicueta,” a statement read on the club’s website.
“The 22-year-old rightback, who recently represented Spain at the London Olympics, arrives at Stamford Bridge following a two-year spell in France’s Ligue 1 with Marseille.”
Chelsea are also close to completing the signing of Wigan Athletic’s Nigerian international Victor Moses, after the two clubs agreed a fee of around 9 million pounds for the 21-year-old.
The Blues have been pursuing Moses all summer, and have had four previous bids for the player rejected as Wigan chairman Dave Whelan stood firm with his demands.
“The club can confirm that after four unsuccessful bids from Chelsea for Victor Moses, a fifth bid has today finally met the valuation and terms set by Wigan Athletic and been accepted,” a Wigan statement read.
The player will now speak to Chelsea to agree personal terms, although no complications are expected.
Moses joined Wigan from Crystal Palace in January 2010 for just 2.5 million pounds, but soon established himself as a key player for the Latics.
He was instrumental in helping the club retain their Premier League status last season.
Wigan manager Roberto Martinez, commenting after the club’s 2-0 loss to Chelsea last Sunday, described Moses as “an incredible young man.”
“Victor is an incredible young man and I think the maturity he showed on Sunday is not normal in a 21-year-old,” the Spaniard said.
“You will get all sorts of speculation and talk, but the reality is every player has a valuation. If a club matches that valuation, then maybe you have to sit down with the player and there is a decision to be made.”
Separately West Ham have completed the signing of Wolverhampton Wanderers winger Matt Jarvis for 10.75 million pounds.
The deal equals the club record set in 2007 when the Hammers bought Craig Bellamy from Liverpool.
Jarvis, capped once so far by England, was “delighted” to have completed his transfer. “I’m delighted to have signed,” he said.
“Hopefully I will add a bit of pace, crossing and deliveries that will provide some assists.
“I’ll be playing with some fantastic players and it’ll be great to get into training,” he said.
“It’ll be straight in and hit the ground running. There’s no time to think about it: you’ve got to get on with it. I hope to train with the team today and then travel up to Swansea.”
Steven Fletcher has also left Wolves, with the striker joining Sunderland in a deal that could be worth up to 14 million pounds.
The Scottish international has signed a four-year deal with the Black Cats, and scored 14 times last season as Wolves were relegated from the Premier League.
“I think Steven will be terrific for us,” Sunderland manager Martin O’Neil said.
“Steven has a proven track record of scoring goals.
“He’s underrated, but not by me. I’m delighted that we’ve been able to bring him to Sunderland.
“Wolves lost their Premier League status last season but I think he’s very good and I think he’s improving,” he added.
Manchester City are hoping to tempt Athletic Bilbao midfielder Javi Martinez to the Etihad Stadium rather than moving to Bayern Munich, after the Bundesliga side’s sporting director, Matthias Sammer, admitted his club were some way from completing the deal.
The 23-year-old was part of the Spanish squads that won both the 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012, and has widely been expected to join Bayern.
Roberto Mancini admitted last week that the club had held initial discussions about signing Martinez, who is valued at 30 million pounds by his club.