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Page last updated at 11:17 GMT, Wednesday, 3 June 2009 12:17 UK

Birmingham to seal Benitez deal

Christian Benitez
Christian Benitez played at the 2006 World Cup for Ecuador

Birmingham will seal the club record signing of Ecuador striker Christian Benitez from Mexican side Santos Laguna after he completes a medical.

The fee could eventually rise to £9m, eclipsing the £6.25m they paid for striker Emile Heskey in 2004.

Personal terms have been agreed with Benitez, who will travel to England for a medical early next week.

Benitez, who is described as a creative player, has scored 31 goals in his past 58 Primera Division games.

The 23-year-old is the son of one of Ecuador's all-time leading goalscorers, Ermen Benitez, and played in the 2006 World Cup in Germany.

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But he recently underwent surgery on a shoulder injury and is unlikely to be involved when Ecuador play World Cup qualifiers against Peru on 7 June and Argentina three days later.



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see also
Birmingham sign Heskey
18 May 04 |  Birmingham
Birmingham plan sensible approach
05 May 09 |  Birmingham
We need five players - Sullivan
05 May 09 |  Birmingham
Birmingham clinch top-flight spot
03 May 09 |  Championship


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