Baggies make wide-man 11th summer signing
ALBION have boosted their creative options by signing Argentina wide-man Sebastian Blanco for an undisclosed fee from Ukranian side Metalist Kharkiv.
The 26-year-old has signed a two-year deal, plus a year’s option, after passing a Hawthorns medical. He will wear the No.28 shirt.
Blanco, capped twice by his country, can play on either flank and has become the Baggies’ 11th signing of the summer transfer window.
Head coach Alan Irvine said: “I’m really pleased that we’ve managed to add Sebastian to the squad.
“He’s an Argentina international who joined Metalist for a lot of money. Unfortunately, he suffered an injury not long after the move, which held up his progress.
“Since then, he’s shown his quality. He’s adept with both feet, is a nice crosser of the ball, creates chances and also scores goals.
“With the players we’ve brought in this summer, the squad has a much better balance thanks to the hard work of the Chairman, Richard Garlick, Terry Burton and the recruitment staff.”
Blanco, who was born in Greater Buenos Aires, made his international debut in a 3-1 home win over Panama in May 2009. He also scored in a 4-0 victory over Haiti 12 months later.
Technical director Burton added: “Sebastian plays in the wide areas but can also operate as a No.10.
“He’s a technically-gifted player who has scored goals from distance with both feet. To have a player who is comfortable on either side is a big asset.
“We hope Sebastian will be able to help the team unlock defences when games are tight.”
Blanco began his career with local club Lanus, where he scored two goals in nine appearances as they won the 2007 Argentine Apertura championship.
He went onto score 17 goals in 114 league appearances for Lanus before moving to Metalist in January 2011.
During his spell in Eastern Europe, he helped Metalist finish as runners-up in the Ukrainian Premier League in 2012/13.
In total, Blanco netted ten goals in 68 league appearances during three-and-a-half years at Metalist.
Blanco has followed in the footsteps of Craig Gardner, Joleon Lescott, Chris Baird, Sebastien Pocognoli, Brown Ideye, Andre Wisdom, Jason Davidson, Cristian Gamboa, Georgios Samaras and Silvestre Varela in joining Albion this summer.