Robbo wins Phillips race

23 August 2006 08:39
West Bromwich Albion boss Bryan Robson is delighted after his patience paid off and he beat Sunderland in the race to sign Aston Villa striker Kevin Phillips. Robson has been looking for an experienced forward to join summer arrival John Hartson and Nathan Ellington at The Hawthorns. Middlesbrough's Malcolm Christie was linked, but Robson swooped for 33-year-old former England international Phillips when it became clear Villa boss Martin O'Neill was going to let him leave. Sunderland were hoping to take him back to the Stadium of Light, where he made his name in the Premiership, but Phillips chose to stay in the West Midlands. Robson said: "We have signed a vastly-experienced player who has played at the top level throughout his career. "His anticipation to get himself a chance, and the quality he has got in converting those chances, are the reasons we have brought him here. "He's also an excellent pro - that's why he's had such a successful career." He added in the Mail: "After we signed John, we've put quite a few offers in for top players but for one reason or another they haven't come off. "But we felt this move was right for the club and for the team and we're delighted it's come off. "Kevin's a quality signing to add to the players we've already brought in this summer and managed to keep from last season. "I have said time and again that we want to keep building the squad with quality players - not just bring people in for the sake of boosting numbers. "We've had to be patient to get the right man - but that patience has paid off."

Source: ESA