Balague gives thumbs up to Velasco
PUBLISHED: 15:08 19 February 2008 | UPDATED: 15:25 10 September 2010
The signing of Spanish international defender Juan Velasco could prove to be a very good one for the player and for Canaries, according one of La Liga's top experts.
The signing of Spanish international defender Juan Velasco could prove to be a very good one for the player and for the Canaries, according one of La Liga's top experts.
Velasco, who signed for Norwich on a three-month Bosman deal yesterday, has been given the thumbs up by Guillem Balague, who is the presenter of Sky Sports' Revista de la Liga programme which covers the Spanish top flight, as well as a football expert for Spain's AS newspaper.
Whether it will be in defence or further up the field, Balague believes Valesco may well prove to be an astute signing by City boss Glenn Roeder.
“I know of Velasco and his career in La Liga very well,” Balague told the club's official website. “He is a very clever player and I think it's a very good move for him to try to break into English football via the Championship.
“He is maybe not the quickest player you will ever see, I think it's fair to say, but he more than makes up for that in his footballing ability. He is intelligent and he plays the game in an intelligent way; the kind of right-back that does not make mistakes and reads the game extremely well.
“His positional sense has always been excellent. In fact, personally I have always thought his quality on the ball was so good that he could operate well in midfield as well - maybe this is something he can develop in his game in England.
“I think the move could be a very good one all round - I hope it is.”
Velasco, who becomes Roeder's second full-time signing after Matty Pattison made his loan move from Newcastle permanent in January, began his career at his home town club Sevilla, where he made 79 appearances and scored three goals after his debut in 1997.
Two years later, he was plying his trade for Celta Vigo and hit one goal in 134 appearances until moving on to Atletico Madrid in 2004. During his two years in Madrid, he made 46 appearances before joining his final Spanish club, Barcelona's city neighbours Espanyol, where he made 20 appearances at the Estadi Olympic Lluis Companys. Velasco was released by the club last year.
The 30-year-old was a member of Spain's Euro 2000 finals squad and has won four caps for his country.