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Page last updated at 14:01 GMT, Friday, 28 November 2008

Westwood influences Birchall move

Chris Birchall
Stafford-born Birchall has won 35 caps for Trinidad & Tobago

Coventry City winger Chris Birchall has said his decision to join Carlisle United on loan was helped by talking to Sky Blues goalkeeper Kieren Westwood.

Westwood left Brunton Park for Coventry during the summer but had only positive words to say about Carlisle when asked by the Trinidad & Tobago international.

"Kieren was one of the main reasons why I came to Carlisle United," the 24-year-old told BBC Radio Cumbria.

"As soon as the interest came in I was more than happy to join."

Birchall, who has 35 caps for the country of his mother's birth, has made just 33 appearances in more than two seasons at Coventry since leaving Port Vale for 325,000 in August 2006.

And the Stafford-born wideman admitted he has been aware of Carlisle's interest for some time.

"I've been hearing there's interest for a number of months, and the gaffer [Greg Abbott] told me they've been watching me," he said.

"It never came off because I was trying to fight my way into the Coventry team and I was playing international football as well.

"I sat down with Chris Coleman at Coventry and he said there was interest from Carlisle and as soon as I knew that I wanted to come."

Birchall could make his debut in Saturday's FA Cup first round replay with Grays Athletic.

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see also
Carlisle sign midfielder Birchall
27 Nov 08 |  Carlisle
Grays 0-2 Carlisle
28 Nov 08 |  FA Cup
Carlisle admit Birchall interest
27 Aug 08 |  Carlisle
Coventry complete Westwood deal
18 Jun 08 |  Coventry

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