Luciano Becchio relishing Premier League challenge with Norwich City

Striker completed move from Leeds

Luciano Becchio wants to pay back Norwich manager Chris Hughton for giving him his Premier League chance.

On a day dominated by striker talk at Carrow Road, Becchio was one of two front men to arrive, while one left and one was put strictly off limits.

Leeds' 29-year-old Argentinean Becchio was one of the ones to sign on the dotted line, penning a three-and-a-half-year deal that involved Steve Morison heading in the opposite direction.

Kei Kamara also joined the Canaries on loan from Sporting Kansas City but, on the other side of the coin, Celtic manager Neil Lennon took to Twitter to tell them they would not be getting Gary Hooper despite a flurry of bids.

Becchio has signed, though, and is hoping to start a relationship similar to the one he enjoyed with the fans at Elland Road.

The former Barcelona B forward enjoyed almost unanimous support during his four-and-a-half-year stay with United, scoring 86 goals after arriving as a complete unknown. He left the club as one of their top 10 leading goalscorers of all time.

"The years I spent at Leeds were the most marvellous, and until today, the happiest of my career. I will carry the affection and love of the Leeds fans in my heart," he told Press Association Sport.

"I want to thank Leeds United for giving me the opportunity to play in the English league and I would like to thank (technical director) Gwyn Williams for giving me the chance to play for Leeds United.

"Now I have begun a new chapter in my career, in Norwich. I don't have any doubt that I will find the same love and affection as I did from the Leeds fans at Norwich."

Becchio will not be amongst strangers at Norwich, with former Leeds team-mates Jonny Howson, Bradley Johnson and Robert Snodgrass already there.

"This is a challenge for me to play in the Premier League, but it's an important challenge that I want to give myself," Becchio added.

"I would also like to thank Norwich for giving me the chance to play in the Premier League. I want to thank the Norwich manager for giving me this chance. I want to pay him back for all the sacrifice and effort he put in to getting me this move."

Becchio will not be partnering Hooper, though, with Lennon standing his ground over the prolific striker.

"Contrary to reports there have been no fresh bids for Gary and even if there are they will be rejected..he is NOT for sale," Lennon wrote.

The signing of Kamara is something of a punt from Hughton, with the Sierra Leone international an unknown quantity.

Former Newcastle manager Hughton has no concerns, though, saying: "He's a player that's done very, very well in the MLS over the last few seasons, scored a lot of goals, a lot of assists.

"Anybody coming from a different country, different division, it's how quickly they can settle in.

"From what I've seen of him, we're not just taking an average player from that division. We're taking a player from that division that has excelled in recent seasons. That's a plus."


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