Baggies win race to sign Phillips

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The Independent Online

The Aston Villa striker Kevin Phillips has signed with West Bromwich Albion in a £700,000 deal after the Midlands club beat their Championship rivals Sunderland to his signature.

The 33-year-old has agreed a two-year contract with the Baggies after passing a medical. Phillips spent only one season at Villa Park after moving from Southampton and managed just five goals in a campaign undermined by injury. He is the first player to leave since Martin O'Neill took over as manager.

Sunderland have signed the French winger William Mocquet for an undisclosed fee. The 23-year-old joins from Le Havre on a two-year deal.

The Leeds United chairman, Ken Bates, has insisted that Matthew Kilgallon will not be allowed to leave the club after saying he has turned down an offer of more than £1m from Reading. The 22-year-old centre-half has emerged as one of Leeds' most prized assets following his rise through the ranks. His performances have attracted admiring glances from several clubs and led to speculation about his future.

Bates said: "We actually turned down an offer for more than £1m from Reading so he's going nowhere.

"If he continues to develop as he is, I can see him as a natural successor to John Terry."

Charlton's proposed withdrawal from the Stock Exchange moved a step closer yesterday when the club purchased 30,000 more of their own shares.

The Addicks' plc have called an extraordinary general meeting at The Valley in September to approve their removal from the Alternative Investment Market, with shares being bought for cancellation next month.

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