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New manager, new defender: West Brom’s Irvine adds Joleon Lescott

Jun 20, 2014, 7:28 AM EDT

http://www.wba.co.uk/ http://www.wba.co.uk/

Alan Irvine hasn’t been in charge long, but the new West Bromwich Albion manager has snagged a significant name on a free transfer.

It wasn’t long ago that Joleon Lescott made a high-profile move from Everton to Manchester City, but the 31-year-old England international is getting lesser headlines years later with his stock significantly lower.

Still, Lescott’s two-year-deal marks a big improvement for the Baggies, who have already added midfielder Craig Gardner from Sunderland in an attempt to avoid back-to-back relegation scraps.

Irvine is excited. From the West Brom site:

“He’s a great professional and he will add to a number of very good professionals who are already in the squad.
“It’s vitally important for me that we don’t go into a Premier League season with only three centre-backs at senior level – and I’m delighted with the four proven centre-backs we now have.
“Nobody is guaranteed a place in the team; I have to pick the best two, or sometimes we might play with a three, and I have to work out the ones who can do the best job in any particular game.”
Lescott, who has 26 England caps to his name, also lifted the FA Cup and League Cup during his time at the Etihad Stadium, and has a wealth of experience in European competition.

Lescott cost Man City 22-million pounds in 2009 and heads to West Brom’s back line, which also includes Jonas Olsson and Gareth McAuley, on a free transfer. It remains to be seen how strong Lescott remains after making just 10 Premier League appearances, 24 overall, in 2013/14.

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