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Nathan Redmond signs with Norwich City – Can the 19 year old make an impact at Carrow Road?

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Norwich have signed winger Nathan Redmond to a four year deal from Birmingham City. 

The 19 year old, who played 42 times for the Blues last season, was transferred for a fee believed to be slightly in excess of £2 million, with a series of add ons that could make the agreement worth up to £3.2 million.

Redmond will be no stranger to Canaries boss, Chris Hughton, who gave the current England U21 international his first start when the pair were together at Birmingham in 2010.

“[Hughton] was very influential on my career at Birmingham,” Redmond said. “He gave me the chance to play and the chance to express myself every time that I stepped on to the field and I feel like on the bigger stage he’ll do exactly the same thing. I’d probably say I’ve played some of my best football under him so far.”

Hughton reciprocated the pleasantries. “[Redmond] is a player that was of interest to us for some time and the situation has now come about that we can get him on our terms. He’s someone we can bring into the forward areas and primarily has played on either wing in his career so far, but can also play off the front.”

Redmond is Norwich’s third signing of the summer, following a £8.6 million move for striker Ricky von Wolfswinkle from Sporting Lisbon and £1.3 million move for left-back Javier Garrido. 

Breaking into the Canaries Starting XI could prove difficult for Redmond, as he will battle Anthony Pilkington for his spot on the left and Robert Snodgrass on the right.

Complicating matters even further is that if, as Hughton says, Redmond is to line up in the role of supporting striker, he will have to take that position from creative playmaker Wes Hoolahan. 

If deploying a 4-5-1, Hughton could, however, move Pilkington into more of a central role and insert Redmond on the left side.

With his dribbling ability, willingness to take on defenders and vision to find the right pass, Redmond could prove a key component to von Wolfswinkle’s adjustment to life in the Premier League.

 

 

West Ham extend Payet’s contract in “enormous show of faith”

West Ham’s Dimitri Payet celebrates after scoring while soap bubbles are blown during the English Premier League soccer match between West Ham and Newcastle at Boleyn Ground in London, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015.(AP Photo/Frank Augstein)
AP Photo/Frank Augstein
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West Ham United hope Dimitri Payet is going absolutely nowhere after the club announced on Thursday the 28-year-old Frenchman has signed a contract extension through the summer of 2021.

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Payet’s current contract was scheduled to keep him at the Premier League club through the summer of 2020, but a series of standout performances (6 goals, 4 assists so far this season, mostly during the season’s opening three months) and rumors of interest from “bigger” clubs meant tacking on another year — and plenty more cash — was the best way to keep Payet in east London for the foreseeable future. The club confirmed earlier this week that negotiations over an extension were underway.

“He’s the best player I’ve signed in 25 years,” said West Ham co-owner David Sullivan. “He’s a [$43 million] player. He’s a supreme footballer. He makes every player in our side play better. On his day, he’s world class, he’s unstoppable.”

Payet, who’s been at West Ham just eight months after signing last summer, could still depart in the summer should he finish the current season strong and/or show up and show out at the European Championship, which kicks off in June. In that event, West Ham would now bag a much heftier transfer fee than they would have done prior to the extension.

VIDEO: Dele Alli’s magnificent juggling goal recreated in hand-drawn crayon

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Remember that Dele Alli goal? No, not that one… that one. Of course you remember it. How could you not?

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How often does a player receive the ball out of the air, flick it over his head, spin 180 degrees and hit an inch-perfect volley from 20 yards out to secure all three points for his team? The answer is, of course, not very often.

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Thus, a goal such as Alli’s stunning winner against Crystal Palace last month has been, and will continue to be, immortalized through numerous recreations in this Digital Age. Above is Alli’s goal recreated in hand-drawn crayon.

Watch Live: Guatemala vs. T&T; Canada vs. Guyana in Olympic qualifying

Canadian players wave to fans after a 2-1 loss to England in a quarterfinal of the Women's World Cup soccer tournament, Saturday, June 27, 2015, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP)
Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP
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Group B is set to kick off Thursday night at the 2016 CONCACAF Women’s Olympic Qualifying Championship, as Canada, third-place finishers at the 2012 Olympics, begin their quest to qualify for this summer’s games in Rio de Janeiro.

Guyana versus Trinidad and Tobago is up first (6 p.m. ET) from BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston, Tex, followed by the Canadians, who will take on Guyana (8:30 p.m. ET) in the nightcap.

[ WATCH LIVE: Guatemala vs. T&T live online on NBC Sports Live Extra ]

[ WATCH LIVE: Canada vs. Guyana live on line on NBC Sports Live Extra ]

The U.S. women’s national began its Olympic qualifying campaign in impressive fashion on Wednesday with a 5-0 victory over Costa Rica, while Mexico jumped to the top of Group A with a 6-0 victory over Puerto Rico.

Sunderland terminate Adam Johnson’s contract after guilty pleas in sex case

Sunderland winger Adam Johnson arrives at Bradford Crown Court, England, Wednesday Feb. 10, 2016. Johnson has pleaded guilty in court to one count of sexual activity with a child and another of grooming. The 28-year-old Johnson, who has made 12 appearances for England, denies two charges of sexual activity with a girl under the age of 16. (Peter Byrne/PA via AP) UNITED KINGDOM OUT NO SALES NO ARCHIVE
Peter Byrne/PA via AP
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SUNDERLAND, England (AP) Sunderland has fired winger Adam Johnson after he pleaded guilty to grooming and sexual activity with a 15-year-old girl at the start of his trial.

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Johnson, who has played 12 times for England, continues to deny two further counts of sexual activity with a child.

Sunderland dismissed Johnson ahead of his trial resuming on Friday at Bradford Crown Court.

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In a statement, Sunderland announced Thursday that “in light of Adam Johnson’s guilty pleas, the club has today terminated his contract with immediate effect.”

The former Manchester City player joined Sunderland in 2012 for 10 million pounds (now about $14.5 million).