Dean joins Saints in �400k deal

COLCHESTER United skipper Dean Hammond is set to sign for League One rivals Southampton this morning.

Carl Marston

COLCHESTER United skipper Dean Hammond is set to sign for League One rivals Southampton this morning.

The U's turned down two offers from the Saints for their central midfielder, but they have reluctantly accepted a third improved offer, believed to be approaching �400,000.

The 26-year-old arrived at Colchester from Brighton for �250,000 at the end of January, 2008. He went on to make 54 league appearances for the U's, scoring five goals.


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Chairman Robbie Cowling confirmed that although the U's did not want to lose their skipper, he would have been available on a free transfer at the end of the season, when his current deal expires.

Hammond had already intimated that he was intending to leave at that point anyway. Mr Cowling has therefore taken the decision to allow the player to depart, so that he can replenish the squad with money from that transfer deal.

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He also insisted that it was his decision alone to agree to the sale of Hammond.

Hammond is expected to make his debut for Alan Pardew's Southampton side at home to Brentford this weekend.

News of his imminent move comes just 24 hours after fellow midfielder Johnnie Jackson had his contract terminated so that he could join Notts County.

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