Robert Koren released by West Brom but Celtic and Hanover eye free agent Slovenia skipper

17 May 2010 01:35
Slovenia skipper: Robert Koren will lead his country against England at the World Cup this summer

German club Hanover and Celtic both want to sign Robert Koren after Premiership new boys West Bromwich Albion decided against taking up their one-year option on the midfielder.

The 28-year-old Slovenian skipper, who will lead his country against England in the group stage of the forthcoming World Cup finals in South Africa, was the Baggies' longest-serving player.

He had clocked up 149 appearances - and scored 22 goals - since then boss Tony Mowbray signed him from Norwegian club Lillestrom in January 2007. He helped the Baggies reach the Championship play-off final in his first season, losing 1-0 to Derby, before winning the title the following year.

Koren started all but four games as Albion suffered relegation from the Barclays Premier League at the first attempt and has since slipped down the pecking order at The Hawthorns.

Head coach Roberto Di Matteo said: 'I would like to thank Robert for his contribution and professionalism and wish him well for the World Cup and his future.'

Hanover have been checking on Koren in recent weeks and are set to confirm their interest after they only avoided relegation from the Bundesliga on the last day of the season.

Celtic caretaker boss Neil Lennon is also an admirer of Koren but that move is likely to depend on Lennon being handed the job on a permanent basis.   

 West Brom join Wolves and Stoke in chase for £3.5m Hull star HuntChelsea join Bayern, West Brom and Derby in the battle for SchmeichelComplete lowdown on all 32 squads in the frame for South AfricaKoren backs World Cup underdogs Slovenia to progress to the Round of 16


Source: Daily_Mail