Brighton & Hove Albion have paid a club record fee to sign Mathew Ryan, the Australian international, from Spanish side Valencia.
Upon winning promotion to the Premier League after finishing runners-up to Newcastle United in the Championship last season, Chris Hughton wasted no time in taking midfielder Pascal Gross Ingolstadt. And the Seagulls boss has now made his second addition of the summer, paying a club record fee – believed to be in the region of £5million – for goalkeeper Ryan.
“I’m delighted that we’ve been able to attract Mathew to the club, and he will certainly be an excellent addition to the squad,” Hughton told the official club website. “For somebody of Mathew’s age, he has very good experience, having played in the top divisions in Australia, Belgium and Spain. He has also competed in European competition and made a number of appearances at international level.”
Ryan was born in Australia but made his European breakthrough in Belgium for Club Brugge, making over 100 appearances before joining Valencia in 2015. The 26-year-old was never able to establish himself as a regular first team player between the posts for Los Che, and spent the second half of last season back in the Belgian top-flight for Genk, making 24 appearances.
Capped by his country 32 times and currently in action at the Confederations Cup in Russia, Ryan will expect to be a first team regular for Hughton’s side next season following the departure of David Stockdale. Despite starring in their promotion campaign last term, the 31-year-old shot-stopper rejected the offer of a new contract and has since signed for Birmingham City.