English Premier League outfit Manchester City announced on Sunday they had clinched the transfer from Spanish side Espanyol of Argentinian defender Pablo Zabaleta.
“Manchester City FC can confirm that Argentinian defender Pablo Zabaleta has signed for the club today from Espanyol for an undisclosed fee,” the club said on its mcfc.co.uk website.
Zabaleta signed a five-year contract following the completion of a medical and agreeing personal terms.
He will join new coach Mark Hughes at City fresh from winning a gold medal for his country at the Beijing Olympics. He has also been capped for the full international side during his career.
The purchase of Zabaleta makes it two big signings for Hughes in the last few days following the return of winger Shaun Wright-Phillips from Chelsea on Thursday.
“We feel the addition of Pablo is another great signing for Manchester City,” said Hughes, who joined city from Blackburn in the close season.
“He's young and a winner, with an Olympic gold medal to prove that, but more so he will provide us with great balance in the side.
“I'm very happy to bring him here and hopefully we can get a good result at Sunderland to round off what has been a very satisfactory week indeed for us.”
Zabaleta was quoted as saying: “I am very happy to come here and play in the Premier League. Playing in England has been a lifelong dream which has finally come true by moving to City.”