TRANSFER NEWS: Bilel Mohsni signs for Ipswich Town just weeks after storming back to France ‘in a huff’
IPSWICH Town have signed Bilel Mohsni on a three-month loan from League Two side Southend United – the deal taking the number of loanees at the club to seven.
The 25-year-old centre-back has trained with Blues over the last two days and is in contention to face Championship table-toppers at Portman Road tomorrow.
Once described as a ‘walking foul’ by Shrimpers boss Paul Sturrock, the long-haired 6ft 3in Frenchman – who can also play out wide on up front – became something of a cult hero at Roots Hall. However, having gone AWOL in his native Paris last season, his Essex employers have been looking to move him on for months.
Mohsni spent time on trial at West Ham in the summer, but a move fell through after the Shrimpers reportedly turned down an offer believed to be in the region of �150,000.
He came on trial to the Blues last month but left after manager Paul Jewell requested longer to take a look at him. However, following a spell at Championship rivals Birmingham, he has returned to Portman Road.
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“He was here for a week and we wanted him to stay for another few days to have a further look at him but Bilel went back to France in a bit of a huff,” said Jewell.
“I spoke to his agent on Wednesday though and the lad was desperate to come back and show us what he can do. He was on a train from Paris straightaway and was knocking on my office door yesterday morning, ready to go.
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“He’s 6ft 3in and can play at the back, in midfield and up front. He’s dead keen to do well, has come in on a good deal for the club and will give us some physicality because we are not a big team.
“We know he’s a one-off character but he could be one of those players that can come into club from nowhere and do something.”
Mohsni said: “I had a good time here when I first came to the club and wanted to sign, but there were problems with Southend at the time and I went back home to my family. My agent has kept in touch with the manager here though and I was very happy when I was told I had the chance to come back.
“I know I have to prove to people that I can play in the Championship and I have three months to do that. It will be a test for me but I’m ready for it.
“Hopefully I can help Ipswich move up the table and give myself a chance to stay here on a longer deal. That is the challenge for me.”