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Wednesday, 28 November, 2001, 14:34 GMT
Fowler agrees Leeds deal
Leeds United, Blackburn and Lazio all wanted Liverpool's Robbie Fowler
Robbie Fowler has suffered frustration at Anfield
Robbie Fowler today agreed personal terms with Leeds to take his 11m move from Liverpool a step nearer completion.

Fowler is believed to have signed a five-year deal which will keep him at Elland Road until 2006.

But the former Kop hero has yet to undergo a medical which will seal the deal.

Leeds chairman Peter Ridsdale said: "Given the thoroughness of our medicals which normally take a full day to complete, I can see it being Thursday before we can even consider completing the transfer."

The Yorkshire club originally refused to pay the 15m that Liverpool were asking for, but the Merseysiders confirmed on Tuesday evening that a fee had been agreed.

Leeds are a fantastic young side and it is clear things are happening there
Robbie Fowler

The 26-year-old England striker has long been linked with Leeds, with manager David O'Leary constantly insisting he needs to strengthen his squad.

The Fowler deal would take his spending to 96.3m in three years - and the move has been welcomed by Leeds fans.

Leeds supporters' club chairman Ray Fell said: "If you are looking at bringing in a striker, then we've gone for one of the best.

"His record proves what an outstanding talent he is, and all the Leeds fans I have spoken to so far are delighted he is coming to Leeds - and we've got him at a bargain price.

"Goals are obviously a vital part of the game and what Robbie Fowler brings to Leeds is consistency, someone who can put the ball in the net on a regular basis.

David O'Leary
O'Leary has long admired Fowler
"We're now definitely back as a big club, with the likes of Robbie Fowler playing alongside Rio Ferdinand.

"Obviously what we all want to see now is a trophy, and while all the clubs with strong squads are looking to win something, the Leeds fans are hoping this season is a breakthrough season.

"Maybe not the championship, but certainly we're looking for some sort of trophy."

Fowler has had a turbulent relationship with Liverpool's management, including a well-publicised training ground bust-up with assistant manager Phil Thompson earlier this season.

O'Leary's move came after he had earlier branded striker Alan Smith's disciplinary record "disgraceful" - and the possible Fowler deal must raise further question-marks about the England striker's Elland Road future.

It was always going to be a difficult decision to leave Liverpool - but I think it must be obvious the time has come to move on
Robbie Fowler

Robbie Keane and Mark Viduka have been Leeds' first-choice striking partnership.

Keane and Viduka have scored just two Premiership goals apiece this season and O'Leary clearly wants to add firepower to his squad.

With Michael Bridges still a long-term injury victim and Smith banned for three matches, the club is short of top-quality competition up front.

Fowler has only had limited first-team opportunities this season.

And Liverpool may have taken the decision to sell him rather than risk a Steve McManaman-style Bosman free transfer departure when his contract runs out in 18 months' time.

Fowler's future has been shrouded in uncertainty for months, and earlier this season he was forced to make a public apology after a training ground row with Thompson.

BBC Sport's Kevin Howells
"Fowler's future at Anfield has been in doubt for some months"
Former Liverpool striker David Fairclough
"Fowler needs an opportunity to show the form he's capable of"

BBC Sport Online looks at five potential candidates to succeed Robbie Fowler at Liverpool.Who's next?
Five to follow Anfield idol Robbie Fowler

BBC Sport Online examines the implications of the 11m deal struck between Liverpool and Leeds United for Robbie Fowler
Liverpool's gamble

Robbie Fowler set to leave Liverpool

Reds offload Fowler

Fowler in photos

Your Fowler verdict
Was Robbie Fowler right to leave Liverpool?



19236 Votes Cast

Results are indicative and may not reflect public opinion

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See also:

11 Nov 01 |  Liverpool
Lazio linked with Fowler
28 Nov 01 |  Football
Liverpool's Fowler cash fear
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