Southampton F.C. have completed the signing of Italian forward Graziano Pelle from Dutch Eredivisie side Feyenoord for an undisclosed fee.
The former Italy Under-21 international, 28, has penned a three-year deal at St Mary’s, with rumours suggesting the Saints paid £8 million for his signature.
Pelle enjoyed two successful seasons under new Saints boss Ronald Koeman at De Kuip, netting 50 goals in 57 league appearances for the Rotterdam-based club.
Koeman and Pelle had previously worked together at AZ Alkmaar, meaning that his will be their third time linking up with one another.
“I’m really happy that it’s finally signed,” said Pelle.
“I had some teams interested in me, but this is going to be the best choice for me because the club wants to keep improving every year.
“The talks between us were only short in terms of how long it took to convince each other. I was pretty sure that, for me, this would be a great step.
“Koeman and I worked together for two amazing years at Feyenoord, and I hope that it will be the same here.
“There are many good things about this club other than the trainer. The Premier League is amazing, and Southampton is showing year-by-year that it wants to improve.
“Last year, everyone in Europe was impressed by the performances of the team, and it’s clear that the club is growing. It’s great to be here.”
Manager Ronald Koeman added: “I had Graziano in my team for my last two years at Feyenoord. He scored a lot of goals – more than 50 in two seasons – and they brought a lot of points to the club.
“Goals mean points, and we needed a good player in that position after Rickie Lambert left.
“In terms of his qualities, he’s a tall striker with a lot of movement and he’s fast. He’s a player who gives confidence to the team because he keeps the ball, and he’s very dangerous in front of goal.
“He’s almost 29 years old, so he brings a little bit of experience to a young team.
“Overall, we’re pleased to have brought in Graziano after signing Dušan Tadić earlier this week. This shows we are committed to strengthening the team and progressing after last season.
“We know that we need some more players because we haven’t occupied all of the positions. We need more players to bring the squad to where we need and expect.”
The Saints have now re-invested about £19 million of the £56 million sum received
from the sales of Adam Lallana (Liverpool; £25m), Luke Shaw (Manchester United, £27m) and Rickie Lambert (£4m).
Porto agree deal for Adrián
Portuguese Primeira Liga giants F.C. Porto and Spanish champions Atletico Madrid have agreed a deal for the transfer of Adrián López, according to the club’s official website, clubatleticodemadrid.com.
Adrián, 26, gradually fell out-of-favour with manager Diego Simeone last term, losing his first-team place to David Villa and Raúl García.
Despite the sale of Diego Costa and imminent exit of Villa, Adrián has been allowed to leave the Estadio Vicente Calderón following the signing of Croatian star striker Mario Mandžukić from FC Bayern Munich.
Adrián scored 26 goals in 142 appearances across all competitions for Atleti.