Michael Owen Seals Manchester United Switch


London, Jul 4: Striker Michael Owen completed his free-transfer move to English football champions Manchester United Friday.

The 29 year old underwent stringent medical tests before signing a two-year contract on what is believed to be a pay-as-you-play basis with a basic weekly wage topped up by bonuses.

"Michael is a world-class forward with a proven goalscoring record at the highest level and that has never been in question," said United manager Sir Alex Ferguson.

"Coming to Manchester United with the expectations that we have is something that Michael will relish."

Owen struggled with injuries in three years at Newcastle United, and with his form sliding fell out of Fabio Capello's England squad.

He admitted United's approach had come as a shock.

"I had just begun to talk to other clubs when out of the blue Sir Alex phoned me and invited me to have breakfast with him next morning during which he told me that he wanted to sign me," he said.

"I agreed without a moment's thought. This is a fantastic opportunity for me and I intend to seize it with both hands.

"I am now looking forward to being a Manchester United player and I am fortunate that I already know so many of the players here.

"I want to thank Sir Alex for the faith he has shown in me and I give him my assurance that I will repay him with my goals and performances," said Owen.


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