ALBION have tonight completed a deadline-day deal for Espanyol forward Thievy Bifouma.
The France Under-21 international has joined on loan until the end of the season with a view to a permanent move. The transfer is subject to international clearance.
He will wear the No.50 shirt but is not eligible for Sunday’s home game against Liverpool (ko 1.30pm).
Bifouma has this term scored three goals in 11 La Liga appearances, of which only two were starts. It follows a successful loan spell at Las Palmas last season where he fired ten Segunda Division goals in 34 starts and two sub appearances.
Baggies head coach Pepe Mel said: “Thievy is a good striker. He is quick, can score goals and is able to play across the front three positions.”
Sporting & Technical Director Richard Garlick added: “We’re delighted to welcome Thievy to the club.
“We set out to strengthen our forward options and Thievy is a little different to the other strikers we have.
“He is a player we have been monitoring for some time and has arrived with a real hunger to prove himself in the Barclays Premier League.”
Bifouma started his career at CS Meaux and moved to Strasbourg before being snapped up as a 17-year-old by Espanyol, where now-Southampton boss Mauricio Pochettino was his manager for the first two seasons.
In August 2011, he scored a hat-trick in a 3-0 victory over an inexperienced Barcelona team in the Copa Catalunya final.
In total, Bifouma has made 49 career league starts, plus 28 as a sub, scoring 15 goals.