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Page last updated at 10:17 GMT, Tuesday, 3 June 2008 11:17 UK

Carsley passes Birmingham medical

Former Everton midfielder Lee Carsley
Midfielder Carsley joined Everton in 2002 from Coventry

Midfielder Lee Carsley has completed his move to relegated Birmingham City after passing a medical.

The 34-year-old turned down a new contract offer at former club Everton, preferring to move closer to his family in the Midlands.

Carsley spent six years at Goodison Park, helping them to finish fifth in the Premier League this season.

"I've joined a club that's building for the future and trying to get where Everton are," said Carsley.

The Republic of Ireland international has signed a two-year deal at St Andrews to become Alex McLeish's first signing of the summer.

Carsley joined Everton from Coventry City for 1.9m in 2002 and was an integral member of David Moyes' side in the past season, missing just five of their 54 matches.

He has undoubtedly been a big part in our success in the last few seasons

Everton manager David Moyes on Lee Carsley

Carsley said he also received offers from Derby and newly-promoted West Brom, but chose recently-relegated Birmingham.

"My contract ran out at Everton and I was offered a new deal there but I felt like it was time to move on," Carsley told Birmingham City's official website.

"I wanted a new challenge and I didn't necessarily want to go to another Premier League club and struggle with them.

"I've left a club that's going to be playing in the Uefa Cup again next season so it's not something I've done lightly."

Carsley said he was impressed by City manager Alex McLeish's vision to bounce straight back into English football's top tier.

"Alex just came across to me as a winner and his visions for the club match my own," he said.

"I'll be putting everything into the next couple of years to make sure we get back in the Premier League."

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Carsley played a key part in helping Everton gain Uefa Cup qualification after finishing fifth in the 2007/08 Premier League campaign.

But despite his decision to leave the Merseyside outfit, manager David Moyes said he had no ill feeling towards Carsley.

"I'd like to thank Lee Carsley for his years at Everton Football Club. He has undoubtedly been a big part in our success in the last few seasons," said Moyes.

"Lee feels he now needs to be closer to his family and everyone at the club fully appreciates that."




see also
Everton 3-1 Newcastle
11 May 08 |  Premier League
Carsley ties up new Everton deal
21 May 07 |  Everton
Carsley joins Everton
08 Feb 02 |  Everton


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