Christian Benitez Reveals Delight At Birmingham City 'Dream Move'

The Ecuador international has spoken of how keen he is to get started in the Premier League...
Birmingham City made their first major swoop of the summer, as they signed Christian Benitez for a fee reported to be in the region of £9 million - a club record - as manager Alex McLeish looks to build a squad that can compete in the Premier League.

Benitez, signed from Mexican outfit Santos Laguna, for whom he netted 31 goals in 58 games, almost signed for Wigan Athletic in January, but is now looking forward to making his debut in England with the west Midlanders.

"It’s a very competitive league and I’m going there, it’s a nice dream for me and thank God," he told The Birmingham Mail.

"Now I have to think fast to adapt and succeed, I can not be more grateful to the people of Laguna and I’m very happy with this new challenge.

"Since I arrived at Santos I tried to do things well, from the first game I gave everything on the pitch. I said that I came to Mexico to give my best and to see if a European club would require me to produce what I did with Santos.

"Thanks to the fans, the press and the whole region (of Laguna), I am very grateful to all, I will never forget them because I am very proud to have been here in a big team."

Birmingham are also hopeful that midfielder Lee Bowyer, who spent the second half of the season on loan at St Andrews from West Ham United, will accept a permanent deal, after the Hammers confirmed last week he had left Upton Park.

Zack Wilson, Goal.com