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OFFICIAL club website of stoke city

Stoke Sign England 'Keeper


STOKE CITY have confirmed that they have secured the signing of England goalkeeper Jack Butland from Birmingham City.

The 19-year-old goalkeeper put pen-to-paper on a four-and-a-half year contract to seal a £3.3 million move rising to £3.5million.

As part of the agreement, Butland will be loaned back to the npower Championship club for the remainder of this season.

In announcing the transfer, Chief Executive Tony Scholes said: "This is our second major signing of a young player today.

"Jack has outstanding potential, and to underline that he joins us on a day when he has been named in the England squad.

"It says a lot about the ambitions of the Club that he has chosen Stoke City ahead a number of bigger clubs interested in him."

Manager Tony Pulis commented: "This is a fantastic signing for the Club because Jack is the best young 'keeper in the country with an outstanding future ahead of him in the game and we are delighted to bring him here.

"It is important that we build for the future and this adds to the strong nucleus of young players which we have within the squad. Both this signing and the arrival of Brek Shea are significant long term investments."

Butland: "I have come here to a great Club, and I am looking forward to the challenge of playing in front of a great fan base.

"The move here ticked all of the right boxes for me, so it was quite an easy decision for me to make to be honest.

"The staff are absolutely fantastic here, and I am convinced that I will continue to develop my game here."

Butland has enjoyed a rapid rise to prominence over the past twelve months, having becoming the youngest goalkeeper to be capped by England, while he was selected in the Great Britain side for the London Olympics last summer.

He joined Birmingham City as a schoolboy in 2007, but after graduating through the ranks at St Andrews, he gained his initial League experience in two loan spells with League Two side Cheltenham Town.

The opportunity to establish himself as first-choice at Birmingham arrived at the start of this season when Ben Foster joined West Bromwich Albion.

The campaign began with Butland earning his first international cap when he played the first half of the friendly against Italy in Berne.

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