January 31, 2020 / 3:34 AM / 23 days ago

Blades sign Norwegian Berge for club record fee

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Champions League - KRC Genk Press Conference - Anfield, Liverpool, Britain - November 4, 2019 KRC Genk's Sander Berge during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Lee Smith

(Reuters) - Sheffield United have signed Norway international midfielder Sander Berge from Belgian champions Genk on a 4-1/2 year deal for a club record fee, the Premier League team said.

The Blades did not disclose the fee but Sky Sports reported they had paid 22 million pounds ($28.92 million) for the 21-year-old, who has played 20 times for his country.

That would eclipse the 20 million pounds they paid Championship side (second tier) Swansea City for Scottish striker Oli McBurnie in August.

"We've tracked him over a sustained period of time, he was a player we highlighted as someone who could come in and really improve us and we're thrilled he's agreed to come here," Blades manager Chris Wilder told the club's website here .

Promoted United, who have broken their transfer record five times since returning to the top flight, are eighth with 33 points from 24 matches.

“This signing shows how far we have come in a short space of time, that we’re now attracting the likes of Sander to the club. It’s a brilliant signing for us... he fits the bill in so many ways,” Wilder added.

Berge made 98 appearances for Genk, scoring six goals and arrives at Bramall Lane with Champions League experience.

He could make his Premier League debut on Saturday when the Blades travel to 11th-placed Crystal Palace.

Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford

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