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Page last updated at 15:51 GMT, Thursday, 26 June 2008 16:51 UK

Canaries swap Gilks for Hoolahan

Wes Hoolahan
Hoolahan helped Blackpool win promotion in 2006/07

Norwich City have signed Blackpool midfielder Wes Hoolahan in a deal worth 250,000, with Canaries goalkeeper Matt Gilks moving in the other direction.

Republic of Ireland international left-winger Hoolahan, 26, joined Blackpool from Livingston in 2006.

Hoolahan told the Canaries' website: "I am delighted to be joining a club that matches my ambitions."

"I want to play Premier League football as soon as possible and I feel this move will give that opportunity."

He added: "Norwich has a fantastic fanbase and they play the type of football that suits my game."

It's unfortunate but I fully understand his position

Blackpool chairman Karl Oyston

Gilks had a difficult season at Norwich and failed to make a single appearance for the first team.

The 26-year-old former Rochdale man was signed by former Canaries manager Peter Grant last summer but could not oust first-choice keeper David Marshall.

Hoolahan will move to Carrow Road after a bid from Norwich triggered a release clause in his contract.

Blackpool chairman Karl Oyston told BBC Radio Lancashire: "It's been a protracted deal.

"There is a clause in Wes's contract which allows him to move for a certain fee. However much we have resisted that and tried to keep him, Wes sees his future elsewhere. It's unfortunate but I fully understand his position.

"I would like to take this opportunity to thank Wes for his service to the club and all he has done for us. I'm sure he will remain in the hearts of our fans not least for his audacious penalty against Preston at Deepdale."


Oyston has admitted that having players with clauses in their contracts leaves clubs in a difficult position.

He said: "I think in certain respects I am frustrated we cannot keep a player like Wes here at Bloomfield Road.

"But in reality we do have players with these clauses sometimes and in some respects I suppose it is better to have the clause in their contracts and have the player than not have the player at all in the first place.

"However, it is something we will be reviewing as we bring in any new players in this summer and will be trying to resist including these clauses or at least increase the figure which triggers any clause."

see also
Norwich to sign Rochdale keeper
27 Jun 07 |  Norwich
Hoolahan saga still to be decided
12 Aug 07 |  Blackpool
Fifa to rule on Hoolahan switch
10 Jul 07 |  Livingston

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