ALBION pulled off a major coup by making former Barclays Premier League Golden Boot winner Nicolas Anelka their first summer signing of 2013.
The striker penned a one-year deal, with a further year’s option in the club’s favour, after passing a Hawthorns medical.
Anelka, who was a free agent after leaving Italian champions Juventus at the end of the 2012/13 season, will wear his customary No.39 shirt for the Baggies.
He has vast experience in England’s top flight having played for Arsenal, Liverpool, Manchester City, Bolton and Chelsea, as well as possessing a wealth of Champions League and international know-how.
As of July 2013 he stood joint-12th in the all-time Barclays Premier League scoring chart with 123 goals to his name.
Head coach Steve Clarke worked with the 34-year-old for a brief spell at Stamford Bridge in 2008 and is delighted a player of such pedigree is now part of his Albion squad.
Anelka boasts league and FA Cup doubles with Arsenal and Chelsea to his name, as well as national titles with Fenerbahce in Turkey and Juventus in Italy.
He won the Champions League with Real Madrid in 2000, scoring in both legs of the semi-final against Bayern Munich – and starting the final.
In the same year he also lifted the European Championship trophy with France.
The 6ft1in hotshot retired from international football in summer 2010 after earning 69 caps and scoring 14 times.
Anelka made his debut as a 17-year-old at Paris Saint Germain in February 1996, and now holds an aggregate transfer cost of just under £90million.
He first moved to England in February 1997 when he joined Arsenal under newly-appointed manager Arsene Wenger.
In November of the 1997/98 season he scored his first goal in a 3-2 home win over Manchester United and netted in the FA Cup final against Newcastle later in the campaign to help the Gunners clinch the league and cup double.
He was voted PFA Young Player of the Year the following campaign but in August 1999 moved to Real for a year in a £22.3million deal before rejoining boyhood club PSG.
He spent the last six months of the 2001/02 season at Liverpool on a short-term contract, helping them finish second in the table.
Manchester City splashed out a then-club record £13million for Anelka the following summer and he finished as City’s top scorer in his first two seasons, amassing 38 goals in 89 league appearances in a two-and-a-half-year spell.
He ventured abroad again in 2005 when he signed for Fenerbahce, helping them qualify for the Champions League.
In August 2006 he signed for Bolton for a then-club record £8million and his form for Wanderers persuaded Chelsea to snap him up for £15million in January 2008.
He overcame the disappointment of missing a crucial spot-kick in the 2008 Champions League Final penalty shoot-out defeat by Manchester United by finishing as 19-goal top scorer in the Barclays Premier League the following term, as well as winning the FA Cup.
And he achieved the second league and FA Cup double of his career during the 2009/10 campaign.
The goals continued to come for Anelka with the Blues before he eventually moved onto Shanghai Shenhua in January 2012 for a new challenge.
During his time with the Chinese outfit he also stepped up to a player-coach role.
He spent the final six months of the 2012/13 season at Juve before being released.
At the time of signing, Anelka had made 646 career appearances, including games as a substitute, scoring 204 goals.
LAST UPDATED JUNE 30, 2013
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