Buttner signs for five years with Man United
MANCHESTER, England ● Manchester United have completed the signing of Alexander Buttner from Vitesse Arnhem for an undisclosed fee.
The 23-year-old Dutch defender has put pen to paper on a five-year contract at Old Trafford after spending four years at the Eredivisie side, where he made 119 appearances.
Buttner passed a medical at United before finalising the personal terms on a contract which commits him to the Premier League club until 2017, and his new manager Sir Alex Ferguson was delighted to welcome the player.
“Alexander is one of the best young left backs in Europe and we’re delighted to sign him,” said Ferguson, who admitted after Monday night’s season-opening defeat at Everton that he would be short on defensive cover over the coming weeks.
“He’s someone we’ve been watching for a while now. He gives us some really exciting options in that position.”
Buttner, who was a member of Netherlands’ preliminary Euro 2012 squad, said of his move: “Joining Manchester United is one of the best days of my life. It’s a team I have admired for many years now and I can’t wait to join my team-mates and play my part in helping the club be successful.”
The player himself recently revealed he was on the verge of signing for the Red Devils.
Buttner is yet to be capped at full international level, and had appeared to be close to a move to Premier League newcomers Southampton earlier in the summer.
● Sebastien Bassong has completed his move from Tottenham to Norwich, signing a three-year deal with the Canaries for an undisclosed fee.
The defender announced he had made the switch via his Twitter page shortly before Norwich confirmed the transfer on the club’s official website.
“Sebastien is a player that I have known well since my time at Newcastle and I’m delighted to have brought in someone with the Premier League experience he has got,” said Canaries manager Chris Hughton.
“He will give us power and pace at the back and again add to the competition in the squad.”
Bassong joined Spurs from Newcastle in the summer of 2009 after an impressive debut season in the Premier League with the Magpies, and made 45 league appearances in his time at White Hart Lane. He spent the second half of last season on loan at Wolves.
The 26-year-old becomes Hughton’s fourth signing of the summer, after Robert Snodgrass, Steven Whittaker and Michael Turner were brought in earlier this summer.
● Rennes general manager Pierre Dreossi believes it is possible that Yann M’Vila could sign for Arsenal before the close of the transfer window.
M’Vila, 22, has been strongly linked with a move to a Premier League side this summer, with North London rivals Arsenal and Tottenham both said to be keen.
However, Spurs manager Andre Villas-Boas stated last week his club’s interest in the France international had ended, as they focus on bolstering their frontline.
The Gunners’ sale of Alex Song to Barcelona, which was confirmed on Monday, has reignited speculation they could look to M’Vila, who is valued at around €20 million, as a replacement.
● Swansea first team coach Alan Curtis has admitted that it is just a matter of time before winger Scott Sinclair signs for Manchester City.
Sinclair has long been linked with a move to the Etihad Stadium in the last few weeks, and Curtis has confirmed that a bid for the 23-year-old former Chelsea player has been made by Roberto Mancini.
With Sinclair, who scored eight goals as the Swans stayed up last season, unwilling to sign a new contract at the Liberty Stadium, his departure is almost assured.
“[He is] not really interested in signing a new contract and I think Man City have made a bid,” said Curtis. “So it’s just a matter of time now before it happens and it’s good for both parties.
“He’s been terrific for us, to be fair, we’ve had two seasons out of him and he was superb in the Championship and virtually his goals got us promotion.
“And last year as well he wasn’t maybe quite as effective as he was his first year – obviously it was a lot tougher opposition – but he’s been absolutely magnificent.”
Sinclair will be the Welsh club’s second major departure of the season, after midfielder Joe Allen moved to Liverpool. But Swansea, boosted by new signing Michu, looked good as they beat QPR 5-0 in the opening game of the season, and Curtis does not expect the two losses to be disastrous for manager Michael Laudrup.
“Like Joe we wish him all the best, but as long as the club keeps pushing forward that’s the main thing,” Curtis added. “It obviously gives Scott the chance to settle in at his new club and it gives us the opportunity to buy a replacement for Scott.”
Swansea are closing in on Celtic midfielder Ki Sung-yueng, as they look to bolster their squad before the transfer window closes.