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Page last updated at 13:25 GMT, Wednesday, 23 July 2008 14:25 UK

West Ham sign Lazio star Behrami

Valon Behrami
Valon Behrami was also wanted by other clubs in England and Germany

West Ham have signed Switzerland international Valon Behrami from Lazio in a 5m deal.

Behrami, 23, can play at right-back or on the right side of midfield and has signed a five-year contract.

He started all of Switzerland's games at Euro 2008 and the Hammers had to beat off interest from clubs in England and Germany to complete the deal.

Behrami has 15 caps and was a regular for Lazio, playing for the Rome side in last year's Champions League.

606: DEBATE

He said: "It's my dream come true to play for West Ham and play in the Premier League.

"At last I am able to sign. After the Euro 2008 Championship I spoke to West Ham who had expressed an interest but I had to be sure it was the right thing for everybody.

"I have now made my decision and am looking forward to being part of this side and playing in the English league."

West Ham's chief executive Scott Duxbury insists the signing of Behrami shows that reports of the club struggling to find the finances to strengthen the squad this season are nonsense.

He said: "Valon is a player who will a valuable addition to the squad as we aim for a successful season ahead.

"His signing also indicates the club's positive ambitions. Contrary to some reports we are fully committed to strengthening the playing staff.

"There will not be a mass exodus and fans can be assured we are working as hard as always to ensure high-calibre competition in all areas of the team."




see also
McCartney signs new West Ham deal
22 Jul 08 |  West Ham
West Ham play down trouble in US
21 Jul 08 |  West Ham
West Ham insist Green is staying
18 Jul 08 |  West Ham
Hammers to make summer signings
17 Jul 08 |  West Ham


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