Campbell to take pay-off and join struggling Albion

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The Independent Football

Kevin Campbell is expected to join West Brom's relegation battle in the next 24 hours after negotiating his pay-off from Everton.

The veteran striker was omitted from the Everton squad which beat Plymouth 3-1 in the FA Cup on Saturday, as discussions to end his five-year stay on Merseyside were completed over the weekend.

Campbell had six months left on his contract, which made him one of Everton's highest-paid players on more than £35,000 a week.

He played his last game for the club in the midweek win over Portsmouth and would have been due more than £800,000 in wages before the end of the season, so Everton have been happy to come to an undisclosed agreement to end Campbell's stay early.

The signing of James Beattie, and the fact that boss David Moyes now believes young reserve Nick Chadwick is ready to step into more first- team action - he scored the third goal at Home Park - means Campbell can go.

He is likely to join West Brom soon, having also had an approach from Wolves.

Thirty five next month, Campbell joined Everton from Nottingham Forest for £3million in January 1999 and went on to be captain at Goodison Park.

His departure is likely to be part of an end of an era at Everton, with Duncan Ferguson unlikely to be offered a new contract when his current deal runs out in the summer.

Moyes can now see the opportunity to give Chadwick a chance to make the step up into the first-team squad.

After his goalscoring appearance as a substitute at Plymouth, the manager said: "Nick has a great record coming on as a substitute for the first team and scoring goals.

"He has been around the squad for a while now, and if we can we will continue to involve him because he has a talent and knows how to get a goal. He's a really energetic boy, and I hope his time will come."

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