Southampton have announced the signing of striker Charlie Austin from Championship side QPR.
The 26-year-old has penned a deal until 2020 with Ronald Koeman’s side after an undisclosed fee was agreed with reports suggesting it is in the region of £4million.
QPR director of football Les Ferdinand said in a statement: “It’s no secret that Charlie is out of contract in the summer so this is a decision made in the best financial interests of the club.
“Charlie has had a significant impact on this football club in his time here and we are hugely grateful to him for his contribution during his spell with us.
“Whilst we are sorry to lose Charlie, once he expressed an interest in moving to Southampton, we could not stand in his way.”
The forward leaves Loftus Road after scoring 48 goals in 89 appearances following a switch from Burnley in August 2013.
Austin has managed nine goals in 16 appearances so far this season despite battling hamstring injury problems.
Les Reed, Southampton’s executive director of football, told saintsfc.co.uk: “We are very happy to be able to welcome Charlie to the club.
“Coming after Wednesday’s morale-boosting home victory [over Watford], this signing is an indicator of our intent to finish the season strongly and continue the progress we’ve made in the last few years.
“Charlie shares that ambition. He has a fantastic goalscoring pedigree, but remains hungry to improve and develop as a footballer – something that convinced him that Southampton is the ideal next step in his career.
“Having had a taste of Premier League football and his first call-up to the England squad last season, he is determined to establish himself at the highest level of the game.
“Bringing Charlie here is a show of the club’s commitment to its plan for future success through investment in talent with a desire to grow and develop.”
Austin added: “I’m delighted to have got it over the line so soon into January. I can’t wait to get started now.
“As soon as Southampton showed an interest that was the one club I wanted to go to.
“You see the progression from when I was playing against Southampton for Swindon. For me, it was important to come to a club that’s on the up and that’s what I’ve got here.”
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