Play­ers on the move

Jer­main De­foe switches to Bournemouth from Sun­der­land and Swansea City sign up goal­keeper.

The National - News - Sport - - LEADING OFF -

Strike while hot

Eng­land striker De­foe has promised to bring goals to Bournemouth once again af­ter com­plet­ing his move back to the south coast. Bournemouth con­firmed yesterday that the 34-year-old had joined the club from Sun­der­land on a free trans­fer af­ter a clause in his con­tract al­low­ing him to do so had been trig­gered Sun­der­land’s rel­e­ga­tion from the Pre­mier League.

Re­turn

De­foe, who scored in a club record 10 con­sec­u­tive league games for Bournemouth dur­ing a loan spell ear­lier in his ca­reer, ad­mit­ted the de­ci­sion to sign a three-year con­tract had been a straight­for­ward one. He said: “It’s great to be back and I’m re­ally look­ing for­ward to this chal­lenge. When the op­por­tu­nity came about to re­turn to AFC Bournemouth, I just knew it was the right one. It was an easy de­ci­sion, join­ing a top team with a top man­ager. It’s a great place to be. The Bournemouth fans know that ev­ery time I pull the shirt on, I will give 100 per cent, and the one thing I can guar­an­tee is goals.”

De­light

Bournemouth, who fin­ished in ninth place last sea­son, have in­vested heav­ily in De­foe’s wage packet as they look to in­crease their goal tally, and man­ager Ed­die Howe – a for­mer team­mate – was de­lighted to have got his man. Howe said: “This is a huge mo­ment for the foot­ball club and another step in the right di­rec­tion. We want to bring play­ers here who can have a big im­pact on our con­tin­ued rise and we be­lieve Jer­main fits that as a nat­u­ral, proven goalscorer.

Pre­cau­tion

Else­where, Chelsea are ex­pected to have the op­tion of re-sign­ing Nathan Ake once the de­fender com­pletes a switch to Bournemouth. The 22-year-old Nether­lands in­ter­na­tional was re­called from loan at Bournemouth in Jan­uary by Chelsea man­ager An­to­nio Conte. But now he is will­ing to ac­cede to Ake’s re­quest to play reg­u­larly, with Bournemouth hop­ing to com­plete a deal. The fee for Ake, who can play in cen­tral de­fence, at left-back or mid­field, is re­port­edly £20mil­lion (Dh95m) and in­cludes a buy-back clause.

Safe hands for Swansea

Swansea City have signed Dutch goal­keeper Erwin Mul­der on a free trans­fer. The 28-year-old ar­rives at the Lib­erty Stadium hav­ing turned down a new con­tract at Ere­di­visie club Heeren­veen, for whom he played for the last two years. Mul­der has signed a three­year deal and be­comes Swansea man­ager Paul Cle­ment’s first sign­ing of the sum­mer.

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