Bournemouth have completed the signing of veteran defender Sylvain Distin ahead of the club’s debut Premier League season.
The 37-year-old arrives at Dean Court on a one-year contract following his release from Everton and is manager Eddie Howe’s sixth new recruit, the Frenchman boasting over 450 Premier League appearances.
Bournemouth become Distin’s fifth top-flight club since arriving in England in 2002 and Howe hopes the experienced centre-half can provide a calm head.
“I see Sylvain playing a similar role to the one Ian Harte played,” Howe told the club’s official website.
“Off the pitch, he is someone the younger players can turn to in times when they need to speak to someone who has seen it and done it.
“Ian was invaluable to us in that respect last season and the season before when he had experience in the Championship and no one else had.
“Sylvain now takes on that role and on the pitch I still think he has a huge amount to offer. He still has his athleticism and is technically very good. We are very pleased to have him.”
Distin himself acknowledges Bournemouth face a tough task in staying in the Premier, but he is more than up for the fight.
He said: “There is a lot you can say about the Premier League but the most important thing is to live it, to be into it and that’s what’s going to happen.
“It’s amazing at my age to still be here – that’s going to be an amazing challenge as well. It’s a tough one, I’m fully aware of it, but very exciting and there’s no better place to be.”