Fellaini capture boosts Everton
Tuesday 02 September 2008
Everton ended a frustrating transfer window by paying a new club record fee for Standard Liege midfielder Marouane Fellaini.
Boss David Moyes has come under pressure following his failure to attract players to Goodison Park this summer, but the £15m capture of Fellaini was preceded by Louis Saha's arrival from Manchester United and Carlo Nash from Wigan on deadline day.
Fellaini, 20, has signed a five-year deal, with the Toffees confirming the fee will rise throughout that time.
The deal was completed by chairman Bill Kenwright and Moyes leading up to the midnight transfer deadline and announced in the early hours.
Acting chief executive Robert Elstone told evertonfc.com: "This is fantastic news for everyone connected with the club.
"We have signed one of European football's most exciting prospects, who will have a huge part to play at Everton over the next five years.
"I spoke with Bill Kenwright and David Moyes shortly after concluding the deal and they are delighted we have managed to secure his services.
"It came late on, like a lot of the big deals in the Premier League, but he's with us and we look forward to welcoming him to Goodison."
Fellaini joined Liege - Everton's forthcoming opponents in the first round of the UEFA Cup - two years ago and made 84 appearances for the Belgian champions, scoring 11 times.
He has also played 10 times for Belgium and represented his country at the Beijing Olympics, where he was sent off in the opening game for two yellow cards against Brazil.
Everton's signing of 30-year-old Saha earlier yesterday had caught the headlines with the France striker passing a medical and signing a two-year deal with an option for a third year.
Saha, whose spell at Old Trafford was beset by injuries, has 18 international caps and scored 42 goals during his United spell.
Nash, 34, signed a similar deal also for an undisclosed fee.
"I have known of Everton's interest for the last couple of weeks and there have been a few sleepless nights hoping it would go through," he said.
"Finally it has and I am over the moon."
The Toffees, however, missed out on 21-year-old Inter Milan winger Victor Obinna after their application for a work permit for the Nigeria international was rejected by the Home Office.
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