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Football: West Ham sign Croatia playmaker Vlasic, Czech midfielder Kral

Football: West Ham sign Croatia playmaker Vlasic, Czech midfielder Kral

Croatia's Nikola Vlasic during training. (Photo: REUTERS/Antonio Bronic)

LONDON: West Ham United have signed Croatia attacking midfielder Nikola Vlasic from Russian side CSKA Moscow on a five-year contract and Czech midfielder Alex Kral on loan from Spartak Moscow, the Premier League club said on Tuesday.

West Ham did not disclose the financial details but British media reported that they had agreed to pay €30 million (US$35.47 million) plus nine million in add-ons for Vlasic, who has 26 caps for Croatia and also scored at Euro 2020.

Vlasic, 23, makes a return to the English top flight where he spent one season with Everton in 2017-18.

"A teenage prodigy with Hajduk Split, Vlasic has already played more than 250 senior matches, scored 33 goals and assisted 21 more for CSKA over the previous three seasons, and was named Russian Premier League Footballer of the Year in 2020," West Ham said in a statement.

"The player has been extensively scouted and the creative attacker will add top-class quality and experience to David Moyes' squad."

West Ham later signed 23-year-old Kral on a season-long loan with the option of making the move permanent.

"I'm delighted to welcome Alex to West Ham," Moyes said. "He'll provide good competition in the centre of midfield.

"He's another young, talented player who we feel has a big potential and will be capable of adapting to the demands of the Premier League."

Kral joins compatriots and former Slavia Prague team mates Tomas Soucek and Vladimir Coufal at the Hammers.

West Ham have had a bright start under Moyes and sit second in the standings after three games, two points behind league leaders Tottenham Hotspur. They next play Southampton on Sept. 11 when the league resumes after the international break.

Source: Reuters

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