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Monday 22 September 2014

Tigers wrap up Jelavic signing

Published 15/01/2014 | 17:57

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Nikica Jelavic has signed a three-and-a-half-year deal with Hull

Nikica Jelavic insists he has a "great opportunity" at Hull after the club completed the record signing of the Croatian striker from Everton.

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The Tigers announced the signing of the 28-year-old on a three-and-a-half-year deal and it is expected manager Steve Bruce will hand him his debut in Saturday's Barclays Premier League match at Norwich.

The club said the fee was undisclosed, but it is understood to be £6.5million rising to £7.5million if they stay in the Premier League.

Jelavic said: "As soon as the manager called me I realised straight away that he was really interested in signing me and that it is a great opportunity for me to come here.

"It is a good club, and we have a good squad. We talked a little bit, but it didn't take long to realise that it was right for me.

"It's a newly-promoted club, but I can see straight away that there is a lot of ambition here within the club and I hope that we can build on the great start to the season and become a really strong Premier League team over the coming years."

Jelavic played for Hajduk Split and Rapid Vienna before moving to Rangers, where he scored 36 goals in 54 games.

He then moved to Everton where he hit 21 goals in two years but saw his form tail off last season and has struggled to secure a starting place this term.

His signing comes against a backdrop of more strife at the East Yorkshire club over owner Assem Allam's proposed name change to Hull Tigers.

Allam was accused of a "crude attempt at blackmail" after he threatened to quit the club within 24 hours if his proposal does not receive FA approval.

The Football Supporters' Federation (FSF) is carrying out a poll of Hull fans and will send the results of the survey to the FA, which has to sanction any change to the 'playing name'.

An FSF spokesman told Press Association Sport: "This sounds like a rather crude attempt to blackmail the FA.

"Our view is that a club's name is part of the cultural heritage of the club and that it shouldn't be approved by the FA unless it can clearly be shown the majority of the fans agree with it.

"We are polling our Hull City members for their view and we will send the results of that poll to the FA."

The FA Council has to agree to Allam's proposal before a change can take place for next season and FSF chairman Malcolm Clarke has a seat on the council representing fans' groups and Supporters Direct.

Egypt-born businessman Allam says he has lent the club £66million and wants the name change because he believes it will boost the brand, especially abroad.

Allam said: "I'm here to save the club and manage the club for the benefit of the community. It will never, never be the other way round - that the community manage it for me.

"But if the community say go away, I promise to go away within 24 hours."

Allam added that the same applied should the FA reject his application.

Press Association

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