Everton FC have signed the English Under-21 international Leighton Baines, paying a reported €8.8m to land the full-back from Wigan Athletic FC.
Everton FC have completed the signing of English Under-21 international Leighton Baines from Premier League rivals Wigan Athletic FC.
The attacking left-back, who has cost a reported €8.8m, returns to his home town on a five-year contract after five seasons at Wigan where he established himself as one of the country's most promising defenders. Baines, who was on the books of Liverpool FC as a schoolboy, scored a spectacular long-range winner for England in the first-leg of their UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualifying play-off against Germany before impressing at the final tournament in the Netherlands in June.
"I think people knew this was the place I wanted to come and I am glad that it is all done," Baines said. "I am a local lad and all my family support Everton so it's good to be here at last." Despite being just 22, Baines made 145 appearances for Wigan, including 72 during the club's first two seasons in the Premier League. Baines becomes Everton's third major summer signing following the acquisitions of the versatile Phil Jagielka and South Africa midfielder Steven Pienaar. Everton kick off their UEFA Cup campaign on 20 September.