Hull City v Burton Albion: Larsson ready to make fresh start

Seb Larsson says Hull City are the right club for him.
Seb Larsson says Hull City are the right club for him.
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AS A two-time promotion winner with Birmingham City, Seb Larsson knows all about the Championship.

The 32-year-old Swedish international therefore seems a good fit for a Hull City squad that remains desperately short of depth and experience with a little under three weeks of the transfer window remaining.

Larsson, after rejecting Sunderland’s offer to stay earlier in the summer, has penned a one-year deal and, according to head coach Leonid Slutsky, is set to be involved today against Burton Albion from the bench.

“The Premier League is unforgiving, but I am looking forward to a new chapter and, hopefully, it will be a successful one,” said Larsson, who helped the Blues, under Steve Bruce, to promotion in 2007 and was then part of the squad that went up again two years later.

“I have done a lot of work on my own and fitness work. I am okay but, obviously, I need to get out on the training field more.”

Larsson had other offers, but decided to join the Tigers after speaking to Slutsky, who once managed Russia against a Sweden side featuring his new signing.

“I took my time in deciding this summer, but I felt that was the right thing to do,” added the midfielder. “I did have options whether to play in England or play abroad. But I heard a lot about the manager and, once I spoke to him, it really interested me.

“I think you always need experience, no matter what division you are in.

“I feel the last couple of seasons haven’t been great for me personally and for Sunderland. But there is a big hunger in me to turn that around and be successful.”

Larsson’s arrival to bolster a midfield area that lost Tom Huddlestone last month is timely and comes amid serious interest in Sam Clucas from Burnley.

Sean Dyche is understood to have had a £7m offer turned down for the 26-year-old, who made a big impression in the Premier League last term.

Slutsky has reiterated his desire to hold on to Clucas after a summer that has seen a host of high-profile departures form the KCOM Stadium.

“I spoke with the owner three weeks ago and the situation has not changed,” said the Hull chief, who is believed to be keen on bringing in Oxford United wideman Marvin Johnson.

“The supermarket is still closed. I hope everyone continues to play in our team.”

Johnson has become a wanted man after netting six goals as Oxford just missed out on a place in the League One play-offs last season.

Leicester City, Aston Villa, Birmingham City and Leeds United are among those to have shown interest in the 26-year-old, but sources in Oxford have indicated only Hull have made a bid, believed to be around £1m.

“There is a lot of gossip and we are working, of course,” said Slutsky when asked about possible interest in Johnson.

“But, for me, we must have information only of an official signing. For me, it is very important that we speak only about players who will play Burton.”