Update from Friday, June 20
West Brom have confirmed the capture of Joleon Lescott from Manchester City.
The club tweeted on Friday:
Update from Thursday, June 19
Joleon Lescott is expected to complete a medical at West Brom on Thursday, according to multiple news outlets.
John Percy, a Midlands reporter for the Telegraph, tweeted the following:
Joleon Lescott to have medical at #wba this evening. Club confident of completing a deal within the next 24 hours— John Percy (@John__Percy) June 19, 2014
Eurosport also reacted to a similar claim from Sky Sports News television channel:
BREAKING: Joleon Lescott having medical at West Brom, according to Sky Sports News.— Eurosport.com EN (@EurosportCom_EN) June 19, 2014
Update from Wednesday, June 18
Joleon Lescott had been expected to join Hull City this summer, but now appears set for a switch to West Brom from Manchester City.
The Baggies' official Twitter account revealed:
Alan Irvine confirms Albion have an interest in signing Joleon Lescott #wba— WBAFCofficial (@WBAFCofficial) June 18, 2014
BBC Radio 5 Live's Pat Murphy reports the following:
West Bromwich Albion are set to beat Hull and Stoke to sign England international defender Joleon Lescott.
He previously worked with new West Brom head coach Alan Irvine at Everton.
Lescott is also familiar with Albion backroom staff members Rob Kelly and Keith Downing from their days together at his first club, Wolves.
Joleon Lescott was on the verge of joining Hull after agreeing to leave Manchester City, reported by Sky Sports News:
Joleon Lescott is close to finalising personal terms with Hull City after his Man City exit, Sky sources understand. http://t.co/S1hIKl9Zfo— Sky Sports Football (@SkyFootball) June 17, 2014
The English defender, who missed out on a place in the national team's World Cup squad after struggling to assert himself at the Etihad, is ready to kickstart his career after a disappointing run with the Premier League champions, noted in Sky Sports' report:
The 31-year-old, who hopes to have a medical later this week, was not offered a new contract by City when his deal ran out earlier this summer with the former England defender dropping down the pecking order at the Etihad Stadium.
Lescott joined City from Everton for a fee of around £22m in August 2009 - and made 92 Premier League appearances, scoring seven goals.
Will Joleon Lescott prove to be a smart signing for Hull?
While City would be disappointed to have lost Lescott for free—they should have pursued selling the defender in January to help ease fears around UEFA's Financial Fair Play rules—the unwanted player's wages are now off the bill.
Hull would provide the perfect opportunity for Lescott to reestablish himself. Steve Bruce's club are built on battling spirit and a physicality that runs throughout the entire team. The manager has made a habit of plucking unneeded quality from top clubs—look at the signings of Tom Huddlestone, Jake Livermore and Nikica Jelavic—providing players with the opportunity to remind everyone of their best attributes.
Lescott made just 14 appearances across the Premier League and Champions League last season, per WhoScored.com. The former Everton man, who is forced to watch on as ex-teammate Phil Jagielka enjoys a stint at the World Cup with the Three Lions, fell into the trap of joining a dominant club for more money, with less chance to play.
City now have the perfect chance to replace Lescott with a top class star. The English title-winners are currently linked with Eliaquim Mangala and Mehdi Benatia, reported by Mike Keegan of the Manchester Evening News, ensuring world-class quality is likely to be brought in. Both centre-backs have the well-rounded ability to be key performers for City across many years.
Oliver Kay of the Times indicates transfer business is ready to start rolling:
#MCFC signing of Fernando from Porto is also done. Only a question of when clubs choose to announce it. Mangala situation remains unclear— Oliver Kay (@OliverKayTimes) June 12, 2014
The champions are certainly looking to progress, and just like the sale of Adam Johnson to Sunderland in 2012, are getting rid of an Englishman who no longer fits into the manager's long-term view.
Manuel Pellegrini is set to enjoy a busy summer of spending—perhaps in a more controlled manner than usual—and will need to offload any deadwood before adding to his pool of talent.