Birmingham City have completed the signing of Ecuadorian defender Giovanny Espinoza from Barcelona Sporting Club on a two-year deal. And the 32-year-old has set his sights on helping Blues secure Barclays Premier League survival after becoming Alex McLeish's latest capture.
Espinoza has won more than 80 caps for his country and participated in two FIFA World Cup™ tournaments. But he also has previous experience of playing in Europe with Dutch club Vitesse Arnhem during the 2007-08 campaign. In addition, he had spells at Aucas and LDU Quito [Ecuador], Mexican side Monterrey and Brazilian club Cruzeiro.
The 6ft 2ins Espinoza is renowned for his strength and speed. He said: "I'm very much looking to playing for this club. It's a new step in my football career and I hope I can help the team.
"I think I can bring experience to the defence as I've played a lot of games at club level and for the national team.
"My objective is the same as the team, to first of all help the club remain in the Premier League," said Espinoza. "On a personal level I hope to establish myself in the team, give 100% in every game and play as much as possible."
Wilson puts pen to paper
Birmingham's promising defender Jared Wilson has signed a new one-year contract with the midlands club. The 20-year-old full-back has put pen to paper on a deal that will keep him at St Andrew's until the summer of 2010.
Wilson, a product of City's Academy, made his debut for the club as a substitute against Queen's Park Rangers in a Coca-Cola Championship encounter in October. He spent the second half of the campaign on loan at League Two outfit Chesterfield to gain regular first-team experience.
Wilson said: "My whole aim last year after I played the match [against QPR] was to go out and get some first-team experience, so I went out to Chesterfield to get that.
"I think the contract is a bit of a reward for doing well in the youth team and whilst I have been away on loan. It shows the manager [Alex McLeish] thinks a lot of me, which is good for me.
"When I come back for pre-season, I am going to give 100% in every training session. Maybe I might be in the squad this season with the use of seven substitutes, which would be great for me in the Premier League," said Wilson.
"But if I don't manage to make that step, then I may go out on loan for maybe the majority of the season."