Cook off to Cherries despite impressive Saints start

Brighton and Hove Albion centre half Steve Cook has joined Bournemouth for an initial £170,000.

The Hastings-born defender played 90 minutes of Albion’s hard-fought 3v0 win against Southampton yesterday and, with the Seagulls losing captain Gordon Greer to a straight red card in the closing stages, fans were expected Gus Poyet to kibosh the sale until his squad was back at full strength.

However, Bournemouth stepped in before his loan recall earlier this week with an official bid and finalised the deal today, which could rise by an extra £130,000 depending on a series of add-ons.

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Cook, who impressed during the Carling Cup match-up with Premiership Liverpool earlier this season, has become a crowd favourite at Bournemouth during a recent loan spell and was keen to sign for the Cherries.

His contract was due to expire at the end of the season, but Bournemouth moved early to ward off competition.