Writer: J P Fear
Date:Tuesday September 4 2007
Martin O'Neill has explained the signing of 24-year-old of Togo international midfielder Moustapha Salifou.
He said on the official site:
'Obviously I watched the World Cup games and they played France. Togo made a slow start as France went for it from the first minute, but the game settled and he did well. But that's not how it came about, it was the fact that his British agent had mentioned him to me before, but didn't pursue it when we took Nigel Reo-Coker on board. Once the agent called, I had to go back through my notes to see what I'd said about him at the time - to refresh my memory. Once I'd done that, I actually thought on deadline day that it was worth taking a little risk.'
The player was brought to Villa for a nominal fee and can hardly have the highest wages at the club, so why not take a punt eh?! I can see very little to lose, he either impresses and gets a longer than one season contract, or he is shipped out!
O'Neill says 'The boy has great hunger and wants to do it. We've paid a nominal fee which can rise if he does well and the rest is up to him. He's really up for the challenge. He can play in a number of different positions, which is always encouraging. He can do a bit, there's no doubt about it.'
He also says he likes his attitude and desire and he is surprised no one else has snapped him up before now.
'For somebody who's played 40 internationals at 24 years of age, it was a deal well worth doing for us and getting a work permit wasn't a problem. It's absolutely and utterly risk-free.'
Date:Tuesday September 4 2007
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