Southampton have this evening confirmed that they have secured the permanent services of Chelsea’s England Under-21 midfielder Jack Cork on what is thought to be a long-term contract.
It brings an end to over a decade at the club for the 22 year-old, who never made a senior appearance at Stamford Bridge.
Cork now returns to a club he spent six months on loan at in 2008, and will also reunite with manager Nigel Adkins, who was in charge at Scunthorpe during the 2007-2008 season when he won the club’s young player of the year award.
The versatile defensive-minded player has spent the last two seasons on loan at Burnley, taking in six months of top flight football before another year in The Championship.
Previous stops at Bournemouth, Watford and Coventry have seen him rack up well over 150 professional appearances and marked him as one of the football league’s brightest talents.
Burnley had been considered favourites to secure his permanent signature but with reports of Chelsea demanding a fee in excess of £3m, Southampton – financially strong due to the backing of the late Markus Liebherr – moved into pole position.
The fee is officially undisclosed but is expected to be in the region often reported, despite some South Coast claims that it could be as low as £750,000.
TheChels wishes Jack the best of luck at St Mary’s Stadium, and hopefully we’ll be seeing him grace the top flight in the not too distant future.