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Fantasy follow-up: Week 18

Premier Fantasy
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Rewind to Boxing Day 1963

Barclays Premier League
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By ESPN Staff

Upson thrilled by Upton Park switch

West Ham's new defender Matthew Upson believes his drawn-out transfer to Upton Park is a 'positive move'.

It was third time lucky for the Hammers after the Barclays Premiership strugglers completed the signing of the Birmingham defender for a fee that could rise to £7.5million.

The 27-year-old has agreed a four-and-a-half year contract, becoming Alan Curbishley's sixth signing during the January window.

Birmingham had previously rejected bids of £4million and £6million for him but finally accepted an initial £6million with an additional £1.5million dependent on appearances.

Upson, who had 17 months remaining on his contract, goes straight into the squad for the Hammers' Premiership clash at Aston Villa on Saturday.

'It was a bit unexpected after all that had gone on,' Upson told West Ham's website.

'But I'm very pleased that the deal is now done. I feel it is a very positive move for me and I am delighted to be back playing in the Premiership again.

'The situation with Birmingham was a difficult one, but this was a fantastic opportunity for me and I'm delighted to be a West Ham player.

'The club may not be in a comfortable position at the moment but I am sure that will change soon.'

Curbishley added: 'I'm delighted that we have brought Matthew to the club. He is a player I have admired for a long time and someone who, once again, has demonstrated that he wants to be a part of the club and its future.

'He has got the experience, the personality and, above all, is a very good player. I'm sure our fans will see that, and I am sure he will play a big part between now and the end of the season.'