Kevin Nolan has reunited with his former manager at Bolton, Sam Allardyce, after Newcastle accepted an undisclosed offer from West Ham for their club captain.
Nolan scored 12 league goals for Newcastle last year and was a key figure in their successful battle to avoid the drop.
His arrival at Upton Park is a big statement of intent from West Ham, who appear ready to spend big in order to secure a rapid return to the Premier League.
West Ham are 13/2 favourites to win the 2011-12 Championship.
A successful £25 free bet on the Hammers to win the league, available to new customers who sign up for a bwin account, would return £187.50.
It wasn’t too long ago that West Ham co-owner David Sullivan was talking of the need for players to take wage cuts and for the imposition of a Premier League wage cap.
But while Sullivan and business partner David Gold have talked at length about austerity, they have not always practiced what they preached, with the loan signing of Robbie Keane a notable example of paying over the odds for a player past his best.
Indeed, the impact of relegation appears to have loosened the purse strings even further.
With the club’s dire financial position seemingly forgotten, Allardyce has been brought in as manager on a £1.25 million-a-year contract.
The club have also secured the services of Abdoulaye Faye on a free transfer from Stoke.
With Nolan set to follow his former Bolton teammate to the Boleyn Ground, West Ham look good bets to be back in the top flight before too long.
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