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By ESPN Staff

Granqvist swaps Wigan for FC Groningen

FC Groningen have completed the signing of Sweden defender Andreas Granqvist on a four-year deal from Wigan.

The 23-year-old, a member of Sweden's Euro 2008 squad, failed to establish himself at the Premier League outfit after joining last summer.

Groningen's technical director Henk Veldmate hailed the signing, telling the club's official website: 'Granqvist is a real central defender - big, strong and he is good in the air.'

Director Hans Nijland added at the player's presentation: 'The negotiations have taken some time. There was a lot of interest in him. He is a young player and also an international. Five minutes before this presentation the deal was sealed.'

Granqvist revealed he had consulted two of Groningen's Swedish contingent before joining the club.

He said: 'I am glad to sign my contract at FC Groningen. I have spoken with my countrymen Frederik Stenman and Marcus Berg and I got a good impression of the club.

'Also the talks with coach Ron Jans made me enthusiastic. It was an easy choice. I consider FC Groningen to be the club where I can develop further.

'I didn't play much at Wigan Athletic and for me it was important to chose a club that suited me football-wise.

'I am a player who likes to build the play up, rather than going for the long pass. I am still young and I want to improve. I believe Groningen is the club that will allow me to do that.'

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