Chelsea, Bolton agree Anelka deal
From correspondents in London
January 12, 2008 BOLTON Wanderers striker Nicolas Anelka is joining Chelsea after the two clubs announced they had agreed a deal on the widely travelled France international.
A statement on Chelsea's website said: "Chelsea Football Club and Bolton Wanderers can confirm that terms have been agreed between the clubs for the transfer of Nicolas Anelka.''
Anelka has joined the London club - his fifth Premiership side - on a four-and-a-half year deal worth almost £15 million ($A32.9 million), Sky Sports reported.
Blues boss Avram Grant, who hopes that Anelka will agree personal terms in time for Saturday's clash with Tottenham, said: "It is not a secret that I was looking for one more striker to add to the squad and he is a good striker.''
Chelsea are without Didier Drogba and Salomon Kalou, who are away at the African Nations Cup, while Andriy Shevchenko has an ankle injury.
Anelka has had a reputation for being a temperamental player who can make life awkward for managers, but Israeli boss Grant was confident the gifted forward would settle in at Stamford Bridge.
"If I was not convinced about that, we would not be trying to bring him here. He is a good finisher but he not only scores goals he gives assists and is a good football player with pace."
And Gary Megson, who became Bolton's manager in October, said Anelka no longer deserved to be dubbed 'Le Sulk'.
"All the things I had read and heard about Nicolas Anelka before I came to this football club are completely untrue as far as I'm concerned," he said.
"He has been terrific in training, in games and off the field as well. Chelsea have a great squad, they're in the Champions League, and Nic will be an asset to them.''
Not long after Arsene Wenger took over at Arsenal he brought compatriot Anelka, then a youth player at Paris St Germain, to north London and then saw the forward help the Gunners complete the 'Double' in the 1997-1998 season with the striker scoring in the FA Cup final win over Newcastle.
But soon afterwards, Anelka, whose brothers were said to be behind many of his reportedly excessive wage demands, saw his relationship with Wenger deteoriate and he was sold to Real Madrid in 1999.
"It is my biggest regret that he moved at that time because I felt he was a star here,'' Wenger said.
"When he left he was a regular member in the French squad. He moved to Real Madrid, Thierry Henry moved here.
"Thierry played in the 2000 European Championships - and Nicolas did not. I still believe at that time it was a big mistake, that move.''
Anelka, who signed a new four-year deal with Bolton in August after joining from Turkish club Fenerbahce, has scored 11 goals in 22 games this season.
The 28-year-old has also played for Liverpool and Manchester City in the Premier League and won the Champions League while at Real.