Date: 2nd June 2017 at 3:20pm
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Stoke City manager Mark Hughes has spoken of his delight at being able to make Darren Fletcher his first signing of the summer.

As for fans will know, the 33 year old Scotland international signed a two year deal at the Bet365 Stadium yesterday evening after turning down the chance to extend his spell at West Bromwich Albion.

Speaking to the Official Website Hughes was thrilled to have captured a player of his quality, especially with a deal on the table at West Brom and interest from Spanish and MLS clubs.

‘Darren is a person and a player that I have admired from afar for quite some time now, and am understandably delighted to have been able to bring him to the Club. It goes without saying that he has enjoyed a distinguished career in the game, having helped Manchester United to win any number of trophies during his hugely successful time there. He has shown over the past two seasons that his qualities and appetite for the game haven’t diminished in any way, and I believe that his experience and leadership qualities will significantly enhance us.’

Hughes went on to add.

‘As a professional he still feels he can enjoy even further success in the game, ambitions that both he and ourselves feel he can fulfil here.’

As for Fletcher, a much wider interview had him saying that the opportunity to work under the gaffer was hard to pass up.

‘Having spoken to the manager I have to admit that I was really impressed by everything he had to say to me. I liked what was said in the discussions I had with him, his ideas and his philosophies – it is just a great new challenge for me. The gaffer was a fantastic player, and I have had the pleasure of working under some tremendous managers throughout my career, and Mark will be another one of those. He is an impressive man who has had a really impressive career in the game, and I am really looking forward to working under him every day.’

Having played alongside a number of the current playing squad at the club, Fletcher went on to add that it shouldn’t take him too long to settle in.

‘I grew up with Phil Bardsley in the youth team at United and I know Charlie Adam from international duty too. I know Ryan Shawcross and of course Saido Berahino as well, so there are plenty of lads that I will be familiar with inside the dressing room. There are a lot of good lads here, some really exciting players and I am really looking forward to working alongside them and performing with them on a daily basis.’

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