Former Chelsea star Kalou joins Brazil’s Botafogo as a free agent

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Salomon Kalou Hertha
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The 34-year-old forward has teamed up with the Big Fire two days after announcing his departure from Hertha Berlin

Brasileirao Serie A side Botafogo have announced the signing of Ivorian forward Salomon Kalou, with the former Chelsea star heading to South America as a free agent.

The 34-year-old joins the team two days after announcing his departure from Bundesliga side Hertha Berlin after a six-year spell.

Disclosing this development, the Rio de Janeiro based outfit published a video on its social media handle.

Although no details have been revealed about his contract in terms of duration, the ex-Chelsea forward is expected to make his debut for Paulo Autuori’s men when the Brazilian league returns in August.

Botafogo previously failed to seal a deal for Yaya Toure, who Vasco da Gama presidential candidate Leven Siano has promised to sign.

Nevertheless, Kalou joins former Japan international midfielder Keisuke Honda as his new club looks to challenge for honours.

Meanwhile, the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations winner has expressed his delight with his move, saying he is “very proud to be in Botafogo.”

Botafogo are among the top clubs in Rio and the former Chelsea star is expected to add bite to their attack when football returns in the country after a coronavirus pandemic break.  

Carlos Augusto Montenegro, a member of the Brazilian club's executive committee had hinted at the veteran’s potential move in June.

"He already has the pre-contract, but he asked for just one more detail in the contract that was sent to him," Montenegro told SporTV.

"I think it's okay. And if no presidential candidate for Vasco appears at his house, I think that maybe he will come."

Before leaving the Olympiastadion, Kalou was punished for posting a video showing him disobeying many of the German football league's (DFL) safety measures upon his return to training with Hertha. 

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Kalou began his professional career at Feyenoord before moving to Chelsea after three seasons in the Eredivisie.

In England, he enjoyed a trophy-laden spell – winning the Champions League, one Premier League title, four FA Cups, a League Cup and the FA Community Shield.

On the international scene, he marked his debut in a 1–0 friendly win over Guinea on 6 February 2007 and went a step further scoring 28 times in 97 appearances for the Elephants.