Aiden McGeady completes Everton move

Early deal for Ireland international ‘fell into place’ after Jelavic fee agreed with Hull City

Everton’s new signing Aiden McGeady is unveiled before the Barclays Premier League match against Norwich City at Goodison Park today. Photograph: Peter Byrne/PA Wire

Everton’s new signing Aiden McGeady is unveiled before the Barclays Premier League match against Norwich City at Goodison Park today. Photograph: Peter Byrne/PA Wire

Sat, Jan 11, 2014, 17:58

Everton have announced the signing of former Celtic winger Aiden McGeady from Spartak Moscow.

There had been speculation the 27-year-old Irishman would sign a pre-contract agreement with the Toffees but he will move to Merseyside immediately having agreed a four-and-a-half year deal for a fee believed to be in the region of €3 million. McGeady’s contract wtih Spartak was due to expire in the summer.

McGeady was paraded to supporters at Goodison Park prior to their 2-0 Premier League win over Norwichthis afternoon, in which Gareth Barry and Kevin Mirallas scored for the homeside.

Afterwards Roberto Martinez revealed the club had been discussing terms with McGeady for next season when the opportunity to sign him immediately arose.

The chance came as Hull made a move for striker Nikica Jelavic, a transfer that looks likely to go through.

“We were talking to Aiden and we agreed for him to come next season,” said Martinez. “But because of his situation in Spartak, obviously that he wasn’t going to be involved too much, and the situation with Nikica Jelavic, we were quite happy to make it happen now.

“I do feel the money we are going to spend will be well spent.

“In a matter of hours it fell into place.

“I was delighted to have Aiden at the end of the season but now it is a real boost to be able to work with him straight away.”

McGeady will now join the Everton squad for a week’s warm-weather training in Tenerife ahead of their next game at West Brom on January 20th.

Martinez added: “There is going to be a bit of an adaptation period because he hasn’t played in the last five or six weeks. That is going to give us a little bit of time.

“But everything is signed and he will travel with us tomorrow to warm-weather training. It is a great moment to introduce him to the squad.”

McGeady spent six years with Celtic before moving to Russia for €10 million in 2010.

The move can only be a good thing for Ireland, with McGeady set to link up with international team-mates Séamus Coleman, James McCarthy and Darron Gibson at Everton.

“Spartak Moscow thanks Aiden for the years spent in the team and wishes him success in his future career,” the Russian club said in a statement on their official website earlier this afternoon.

The Glaswegian made 93 appearances for the club and scored 13 goals, but he never anticpated being in Russia for so long and has been eager to move closer to home for some time.

“When I am with the Ireland squad sometimes I look at the guys who are playing in England and feel a bit ­jealous,” he told the Guardian last year. “I feel I could be in the back of people’s minds now, that I could be forgotten about. People ask me: ‘Where are you playing now?’ ‘Oh are you still there?

“I have made no secret of the fact that one day I would like to play in England,” he added. “I would be disappointed if I never get the chance to do that. I didn’t think I would be here this long, I didn’t see myself being here longer than a couple of years. But no footballer really looks four or five years ahead.”

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