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Thursday, January 19, 2006
Confusion as Fiorentina 'buy' Everton's Kroldrup

Everton today insisted 'discussions are continuing' with Fiorentina, after they received an offer for Danish defender Per Kroldrup from the Italian club.

Fiorentina earlier announced they had signed the 26-year-old, who cost the Toffees 5million when he joined from Udinese last summer.

Before appearing as a first-half substitute in last night's FA Cup win over Millwall, Kroldrup had made just one appearance since his transfer to Goodison Park.

Fiorentina sporting director Pantaleo Corvino said: 'We've always said that the club would continue to look closely at the opportunity to sign quality players in the transfer market.

'Hence, we have signed on a definite transfer defender Kroldrup - not only for our current needs but for the future.'

However, with fellow defender Joseph Yobo away on African Nations Cup duty and Kroldrup replacing the injured David Weir during the 1-0 victory over Millwall, the Dane may suddenly have become central to manager David Moyes' plans.

Kroldrup signed a four-year contract but has since seen his season ruined by injury.

Chief executive Keith Wyness told the club's website: 'There has been some interest in Per, and we have received an offer from Fiorentina. Discussions are continuing.'

German side Schalke were also said to be interested, but it was thought the player's high wages and length of his Everton contract could prove prohibitive to any quick sale.

Assistant manager Alan Irvine said Kroldrup could be set to play a key role, after Weir was forced off with a head injury during the cup win.

'It [Weir's injury] could be a problem - but having Kroldrup fit will be a great help,' he said.

'He has waited a long time to play and he did very well. Unfortunately injuries have cost him dearly. He got in against Aston Villa in December but got injured.

'He did very well against Millwall - we now certainly hope he settles in.

'With foreign players, you always assume it will take time for them to get used to the game here. It's different, and everyone struggles at first.

'It takes time to adjust, and unfortunately for him he has not had that time on the pitch because injuries have interrupted everything for him.

'He has been unable to make progress. Now we hope he will get into the swing of things. He has shown he is a nice footballer but he needs to get used to the type of football played in this country.'




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