Albion sign French winger Anthony Knockaert from Standard Liege

Posted On 07 Jan 2016 at 6:06 pm

Brighton and Hove Albion have completed the signing of 24-year-old French winger Anthony Knockaert from Standard Liege for an undisclosed fee.

Knockaert has agreed a three-and-a-half-year contract with Albion until June 2019. The transfer is still subject to international clearance.

Albion manager Chris Hughton said: “Once I knew that there was a possibility that Anthony was available, he was somebody I was interested in bringing to the club for a number of reasons.

“He is a different type of player to the wide players we have here. He can play in three positions – on the left, off the front man, but predominantly in his previous time here in England he played on the right side.

“He is a very good technical, offensive player and has experience of playing in the Championship in a team who played a 4-4-2 system and he is used to having a responsibility in the wide areas. But mostly it is what he can bring us offensively in terms of goals and assists.”

Knockaert was born in Roubaix, in the north of France, on the Belgian border. He began his senior professional career with Guingamp in 2009. There he helped the club win promotion from the third to the second tier of French football in 2011.

He transferred to Leicester City in August 2012, signing a three-year contract with the Foxes. The club reached the play-offs in his first season, although they were knocked out at the semi-final stage.

The next season Leicester won automatic promotion and he played an integral part in their success as they won the Championship.

Last summer, after a season in the Premier League, Knockaert rejected a new contract at Leicester to sign for the top-flight Belgian side Standard Liege. He made 82 starts and 24 substitute appearances during his stint with the Foxes and scored 13 goals.

In the first half of the current season, he played 20 times for Liege, scoring five goals in the Belgian Pro League, prior to his return to England with Albion.

Subject to international clearance, Hughton has confirmed that Knockaert is likely to be available for selection when the Seagulls travel to the New York Stadium to play Rotherham United next Tuesday (12 January).

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