Saints seal Wanyama deal

  • Last Updated: July 14 2013, 11:05 BST

Victor Wanyama's long-mooted move to Southampton has been completed, with the midfielder leaving Celtic for a Scottish record fee reported to be £12.5million.

Victor Wanyama: Has joined Southampton on a four-year deal
Victor Wanyama: Has joined Southampton on a four-year deal

After overcoming an apparent impasse in discussions, the highly-rated 22-year-old has put pen to paper on a four-year deal at St Mary's.

It is understood Southampton have broken their club transfer record to complete the signing, beating the £12million they spent on Bologna's Gaston Ramirez last summer.

Wanyama's move therefore dwarfs the £9.5million Spartak Moscow paid Celtic for Aiden McGeady three years ago and sees it become the largest fee ever paid in Scottish football, breaking Rangers' long-standing record £12million outlay for Tore Andre Flo.

Until recently it had looked like a move to the south coast had collapsed over personal terms, leading to suggestions of issues with his representatives.

However, manager Mauricio Pochettino last week had not given up on the deal and Wanyama now becomes Saints' second signing of the summer, following the £8.5million purchase of Lyon's Dejan Lovren.

"It feels great and I am happy to be here," Wanyama told the club's official website, www.saintsfc.co.uk.

"Finally it has happened and we've come to the end [of negotiations], so I am delighted.

"There were other options, but Southampton is a club with ambitions so I chose to came here.

"Southampton is a good club and it has good players, so I just want to train hard and work hard to be a part of the starting XI. We'll see where that will take me.

"I'm very grateful to be here and I'm looking forward to playing in the Premier League.

"I've seen that the stadium is great and the dressing room is looking good, and I know some of the players. I hope they will help me and I think I will get along with the others, so it will be good.

"I am happy to be a part of Southampton's squad. It means a lot because because it has been my dream to play in the Premier League and now I am here."

Wanyama had been with Celtic for two years, having arrived as a relative unknown from Belgian side Beerschot.

Choosing the number 67 jersey in appreciation of the Hoops' European Cup triumph, he quickly became a fans' favourite.

Wanyama shone for the Glasgow giants and his Champions League performances saw his stock rise markedly, leading to reported interest from Liverpool, Arsenal, Everton and Cardiff.

The latter reportedly submitted a £10million bid, although it is Southampton that have won the race for his signature.

"I am very pleased to have secured the signing of Victor because we are a big admirer of his talents and he will fit in well to the team here at Southampton," manager Pochettino said.

"I want to stress that the deal could have been done sooner, but this shows that we do business on our terms.

"The most important thing is that ourselves, Celtic and the player are all happy with the way it has all gone.

"The fact that a lot of top European clubs were also keen to sign him shows what an attractive prospect Southampton Football Club is to a player who had his pick of the teams in England and abroad.

"I've watched him perform at the top level in the Champions League, and I believe that he will be a valuable addition to our Premier League squad for the season ahead."


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