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Its Official- Fielding, Ward, Robinson All Signed

Chris Peduck

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Posted on: Mon 09 May 2011

Derby County have today kicked off what is hoped to be a busy summer of transfer activity by making their first two signings of transfer window.

The Rams have snapped up England under-21 international goalkeeper Frank Fielding from Blackburn Rovers and striker Jamie Ward from Sheffield United, both for undisclosed fees.

Fielding, who has penned a three-year deal subject to Premier League & FA clearance, starred for England's under-21s in their qualification campaign for the UEFA European Under-21 Championships in Denmark this summer and he has been named in their 40-man provisional squad for the tournament in June.

Ward, who has been capped at under-21 level for Northern Ireland, has signed a two-year contract with the option of a further year.

The duo enjoyed successful loan spells with the Rams during the 2010/11 season and Derby have moved quickly to ensure their futures remain at Pride Park.

Derby have also agreed an undisclosed fee with npower Championship rivals Millwall for striker Theo Robinson.

The striker has agreed terms on a two-year deal, with a year's option, and he will officially join the Rams on 1st July 2011 after spending the final three months of the season on loan at Pride Park.

Manager Nigel Clough has stated he expects to be active throughout the summer to re-shape his squad ahead of the 2011/12 season.

Derby finished the season in 19th place in the Championship and Clough is delighted to have kick-started his summer activity so soon after the conclusion of the season.

He said: "We have stated our desire to keep Frank, Jamie and Theo for some time, so it is nice to be in a position now where we can confirm they will be part of our future.

"All three of them had been on our radar before they even joined us.

"We've managed to get three of our long-term targets tied down very early in the summer, which is a massive bonus for us.

"I don't need to explain what they are all about, they have done that on the pitch and we see them all as big parts of our future."

23-year-old Fielding made 16 appearances for the Rams during two separate loan spells from Blackburn, and quickly made himself an iconic figure with the Derby support after a succession of impressive displays.

A Blackburn Rovers Academy product, Fielding never made a competitive appearance for Rovers' first team and gained valuable experience in the Football League whilst on loan at Wycombe Wanderers, Northampton Town, Leeds United and Rochdale, who he helped to win promotion from League Two in 2009/10.

24-year-old Ward also won the hearts of the Derby fans with his never-say-day attitude and incisive attacking play in the closing months of the season, and he managed to score five goals in 13 outings during his temporary stay.

A former Aston Villa trainee, Ward enjoyed successful spells in the lower leagues with Torquay United and Chesterfield before the Blades splashed out in excess of £300,000 for his services in 2009.

His goalscoring exploits for the Spireites, 29 in 67 league games, caught the eyes of many Championship clubs, especially after a run of 10 goals in 10 games just prior to his move to Bramall Lane.

Robinson, who is 22, scored twice in eight starts and a further five outings from the substitutes bench and showed enough to Clough and his coaching staff that he was worthy of making his stay at Pride Park a permanent one.

Birmingham-born Robinson began his career at Watford as a trainee and had productive loan spells at Wealdstone, Hereford United and Southend United where he gained valuable first-team experience before he teamed up with Huddersfield Town for an undisclosed fee in the summer of 2009.

He scored 16 goals for the Terriers last season in League One, and his impressive displays caught the eye of Millwall, who he joined at the start of this season initially on loan before signing a permanent deal at the start of January, also for an undisclosed fee.

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Best news today.

As much as people slate Theo, I still reckon he'll turn out good over the summer with his touch and headers etc.

Ward's a great signing, shows a great attitude and works his heart out, like a younger Paul Dickov.

Fielding; quality already at such an early stage in his career, definitely Prem quality in years to come, hopefully we'll be in the Prem when that period comes though...

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We will be fielding our best team next year to ward off relegation again.

Seriously though, two good signings. I'm not really bothered about Robinson, he is fast but his first touch is apalling at the momment and he hasn't really displayed any vision. He reminds me of a younger, worse version of Walcott, he just runs really fast into the corner flag.

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Just seen that they have a 20% sell on clause in the deal, not sure if it's been mentioned or not already, if it has I apologise there is nothing to see here.

Jamie Ward's loan spell at Derby County will be made permanent.

The 24-year-old forward moved to Pride Park on loan in February and has since played 13 times under Nigel Clough.

Derby and the Blades have agreed an undisclosed fee for his services, whilst United have also insisted on a 20 per cent sell-on clause.

The deal will be rubber stamped once the transfer window reopens.


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