Midfielder Brellier joins Canaries

French midfielder Julien Brellier has joined Norwich City on a free transfer, signing up for two years. He joins after failing to agree a new deal at Scottish Premier League side Hearts.

French midfielder Julien Brellier has joined Norwich City on a free transfer, signing up for two years after leaving Hearts.

The 25-year-old becomes boss Peter Grant's fourth summer signing, following defender Jon Otsemobor, keeper Matthew Gilks and striker Jamie Cureton.

Brellier played 58 games for the Scottish Premier League side including matches in Champions League qualifying rounds. He was coached by City's assistant manager Jim Duffy during his spell at Tynecastle.

City manager Peter Grant said he was pleased to secure the services of the sought-after player.

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Grant said: "Julien will be a great asset to us and I'm delighted to bring him into our squad.

"He's got excellent tactical awareness which he first developed learning the game in France and Italy. He plays the game at a high tempo and likes to get close to the opposition - and he knows when to fill in to free other players to get forward.

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"Other clubs have been interested in getting him but he's chosen to come to Norwich, which is very pleasing."

Brellier began his career at French club Montpellier before being snapped up by Inter Milan in 2000. But he played limited games for the Italian giants, and spent spells on loan at Lecco and Legnano before joining Venezia in 2003 and going on loan to Salernitana for part of the following season before being released.

He joined Hearts for two years after impressing manager George Burley, and became a favourite with fans for his thorough work in midfield.

His final season at Hearts began badly when he received a red card as the Scottish side crashed out of the Champions League at AEK Athens, with Brellier increasingly becoming frustrated at finding himself in and out of the side.

Last week Brellier said: "I've been speaking with some clubs and I have offers in France and England. I have to decide which choice is best.

"I think I will play in one of those countries next year, although there are more English clubs interested in signing me than French ones.

"I hope to have a new club next week. I will be happy to come back to the UK for a good opportunity and a good challenge.

"British football suits me and I need somewhere not too far from France because I need to see my daughter."

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