Lewis Grabban leaves Bournemouth for season-long loan at Sunderland

Lewis Grabban has completed his season-long loan to Sunderland from Bournemouth.

The striker, who has scored 36 goals during two spells at the Vitality Stadium, underwent his medicalon Wearside on Wednesday afternoon.

Grabban becomes Simon Grayson’s fifth summer signing and boasts experience of playing in both the Premier League and the Sky Bet Championship.

He admitted that the manager played a pivotal role in his decision to join the club. “I’m happy to have everything sorted and I’m looking forward to the season,” Grabban told the club’s official website.

“The size of the club and its history attracted me, as well the manager.”

He added: “I’ve had passings with him during his time at Leeds and also last season when he was at Preston. He told me what he wanted and what his ambitions were, and that’s why I’m here. It’s a good opportunity for me and hopefully I can do something special.”

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Oliver Norwood joins Fulham on a season-long loan from Brighton

Fulham have announced the signing of Brighton midfielder Oliver Norwood on a season-long loan deal.

The Northern Ireland international made 33 appearances as the Seagulls won promotion to the Premier League last season.

The 26-year-old, also formerly of Huddersfield and Reading, told Fulham’s official website: “I’m just delighted to be here.

“Having played Fulham the last two seasons, the football they have played, it suits my style and suits the way I like to play football.

“Once I knew of the interest I was desperate to get it done and I am very happy to be here.”

Brighton manager Chris Hughton said: “Ollie made a key contribution towards last season’s success and this is a good move for all three parties involved. It gives Ollie the opportunity to play regular football. “Fulham are getting an excellent midfield player, and we’ll monitor his progress throughout the season.”

Atletico Madrid midfielder Diogo Jota joins Wolverhampton Wanderers on a season-long loan

Wolves have signed Diogo Jota on a season-long loan from Atletico Madrid.

Jota, 20, played under Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo while on loan at Porto in the 2016-17 campaign, where he scored nine goals in 35 appearances for the Portuguese club.

The attacking midfielder has four years remaining on his current contract at La Liga giants Atletico but has opted to reunite with Nuno at Molineux Stadium.

“Wolves is a huge club and a historic club,” Jota told Wolves’ official website.

“It is always a goal for me to play in England and this is a good opportunity for me. “It is good for me to work with Nuno again because I know him and worked with him last year. I have also worked with some of the other players here as well. That will help me settle in here.

“It is always better when there are people that you know when you are moving to something different – a different country with a different language.”

Jota featured in the Champions League for Porto last season and has represented Portugal at under-23 level, but is looking forward to the prospect of testing himself in England’s second tier.

“Playing in the Championship will be very hard and very competitive with a lot of games,” he added. “It will be a good experience for me.

“I will always do my best for the fans – I will do a lot of running for sure and hopefully will score goals and provide assists.”

Middlesbrough set to make Nottingham Forest striker Britt Assombalonga their club record buy


Middlesbrough are set to smash their transfer record with the signing of striker Britt Assombalonga from Nottingham Forest.

The 24-year-old striker will cost Boro a reported £14million and that will eclipse the £12.7million fee Boro paid Heerenveen for striker flop Afonso Alves in January 2007.

Assombalonga travelled Rockcliffe Park today to hammer out the deal and he could have a medical and sign in the next 24 hours.

The deal for the striker is set to be worth an initial £14m, although this could rise depending on promotion.

Boro have seen off Premier League sides Burnley and Watford, who were both chasing the forward, who returned from Forest’s pre-season trip to Florida at the weekend.

He is believed to have been given the go ahead to hold talks with Boro after Burnley’s £8million offer last week was rejected.

The Clarets are believed to have improved that offer, but it fell way short of Boro’s bid and the former Peterborough man looks all set to join the Teessiders.

Tom Huddlestone joins Derby from Hull City 


Derby have signed midfielder Tom Huddlestone from Sky Bet Championship rivals Hull on a two-year deal with the option of a further 12 months.

The Tigers confirmed a release clause in the 30-year-old’s contract had been activated and despite their best efforts to keep him at the KCOM Stadium, Huddlestone has opted to leave.

Hull’s vice-chairman Ehab Allam told the club’s official website: “We recently met with Tom’s representatives, prior to receiving the offer from Derby to discuss a new longer-term deal on improved terms.

“I feel this stated our intention to keep Tom at the club, but ultimately the decision to leave was down to Tom and his representatives. Whilst obviously disappointed by his decision we will continue to work on new signings and expect additions early next week.”

Huddlestone, who was born in Nottingham, previously played for the Rams as a teenager between August 2003 and the summer of 2005, making 95 appearances before moving to Tottenham.

Ruben Neves join Wves from Porto in a club-record transfer


Wolves have secured the services of Ruben Neves from Porto in a club-record deal of around £15m.

The 20-year-old defensive midfielder became the youngest captain in Champions League history when he led Porto against Maccabi Tel Aviv in 2015.

“I’m very excited to play at this club,” says Neves, who has moved in a five-year deal.

“It is a very big club and I hope to help the team to win their goals. I have always wanted to play in England and we have a good team. I think we can do good things this season.

“It is also a good opportunity for me to work again with a trainer (Nuno Espírito Santo) I worked with last year.

“I am very excited to start and to play in front of the fans – I love that.”

Neves came through Porto’s academy and made 67 senior appearances, scoring nine goals. He also played for the Portugal U21 side in June’s European Championships.

The fee beats the £13m paid to Benfica forwinger Helder Costa in January.

Ibrahima Cisse joins Fulham ftom Standard Liege

Fulham have confirmed the arrival of Ibrahima Cisse from Standard Liege for an undisclosed fee.

The 23-year-old midfielder has agreed a three-year deal with Fulham holding an option to extend this by 12 months.

Sky sources indicated  earlier this weekthat the former Belgium U21 international was in London after a deal was agreed between the clubs.

Back in January Fulham were interested in Cisse  and had two bids, the highest being £2.2m,  rejected by the Belgian club.

“I am very happy to be here,” Cisse said. “It is a great opportunity at Fulham and I am looking forward to showing my qualities and what I can do.”

Last season, Cisse was a regular in the Standard side, where he made 27 appearances in all competitions.

For the latter campaign, Standard finished top of the Belgian Pro League table, but they lost out to Anderlecht in the Championship Play-Off.

Cisse has also played for fellow top-flight outfit KV Mechelen, where he made 47 appearances across two seasons before returning to his home town club.

Fulham sign ex-Juventus and Real Madrid defender Marcelo Djalo


Fulham have signed defender Marcelo Djalo from Spanish second division side Club Deportivo Lugo on a three-year deal for an undisclosed fee.

The 23-year-old former Real Madrid youth player joined Juventus in 2014 but was loaned out three times and never made a first-team appearance.

He moved to Lugo last season and his Fulham deal includes a 12-month option.

“The truth is, for me it is a proud moment. It’s a big club, an emblem of the city,” Djalo told the club website.

Former Chelsea captain John Terry joins Aston Villa 

Championship club Aston Villa has signed former England and Chelsea captain John Terry on a one-year contract.
The news was confirmed shortly after Villa owner Dr. Tony Xia had tweeted: “Welcome JT to Birmingham city…Aston Villa!”

The 36-year-old defender, whose contract at Stamford Bridge expired on 30 June said he turned down offers to carry on playing in the Premier League for more money because he did not want to play against Chelsea.
The move is one of the most lucrative ever signed by a player in the Championship, and could see 36-year-old Terry earn (£60,000 a week) £4m if he can help secure a successful promotion campaign.

Terry told the club’s official website: “I am delighted to join Aston Villa. It’s a club I have admired from afar for many years — there are fantastic facilities at Bodymoor Heath, Villa Park is one of the finest stadiums in the country and there’s a good group of players here, with an experienced and successful manager in Steve Bruce.

“I can’t wait to get started now and look to help the squad achieve something special this season.”
Terry confirmed there is no coaching role involved in his contract with Villa, but was reluctant to indicate whether he would continue his playing career at Villa Park should they get back to the top flight – where he would meet Chelsea.

“If that’s the ideal situation and in one year’s time we’re sitting here with Aston Villa back in the Premier League then I’ve done my job and everyone else has done theirs,” he added. “We can cross that bridge hopefully when we come to it.”
The 36-year-old had offers from West Bromwich Albion, Swansea and Bournemouth, but admitted he turned them down out of loyalty to his former club.

“For me it was just the mental side of playing against Chelsea, it was just too much to get over for me,” said Terry.

“I was 22 years at the football club, 22 unbelievable years, I’m very proud of that but this is a new chapter in my life, my career. I wish Chelsea well next season and will be watching out but my thoughts are 100 per cent here.”Terry has played for only two other English clubs – Chelsea and Nottingham Forest, with whom he had a short loan spell in 2000.
He won 78 caps for England, played 717 games for the Blues and won his fifth Premier League title in May.
Villa finished 13th in the Championship last season but Steve Bruce’s side are among the favourites to win automatic promotion to the top flight in 2017-18.

Preview: Bournemouth Vs Aston Villa

cherries
Bournemouth celebrates winning the Championship

For Bournemouth, the fairy tale continues. The Championship winners were hailed for delivering some exhilarating and breathtaking football on their way to the title. However, they know that to survive in their first ever season in the top flight, they will need to be at their very best all through the season. Eddie Howe’s appointment has proven to be a success and the fans will believe that this side is capable of pulling some surprises over the course of the season.

Bournemouth will be looking to Sylvian Distin to provide the experience as they try to navigate through their Premier League debut. Yann Kermorgant goals were important as the Cherries claimed the title last season. 10 of his 15 league goals turned out to be the winning goals and a similar outing this season will ensure that the Cherries survive on their first attempt at the big league.

Aston Villa enjoyed something of a renaissance after the appointment of Tim Sherwood but will be hoping for a better performance than what they produced at the FA Cup final where they were comprehensively beaten by Arsenal 4-0. Their task will not be easy though following the departure of Christian Benteke and Fabian Delph. Dutch defender Vlaar has also left the club on a free transfer. Aston Villa have never beaten a newly promoted Premier League side on opening day (D1 L2).

The two sides will be meeting for the first time in league competition since 1987/88 season but Villa did beat the Cherries 2-1 in the FA cup last season on their way to the finals.

Team News

Bournemouth

Summer signings Max Gradel, Lee Tomlin and Sylvain Distin are all available to make their debuts.

Aston Villa

Jordan Amavi, Jordan Ayew, Jose Crespo, Rudy Gestede, Jordan Veretout, Idrissa Gueye and Micah Richards will be expected to play some part in a new-look Villa team. Jores Okore misses out with a knee injury, while Sherwood also has concerns over the fitness of Jack Grealish, Carles Gil and Carlos Sanchez.