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James Crawley

James Crawley writes

Posted Monday, July 1st 2019

Kalas signs for club-record fee

City have secured the permanent return of last season’s loan star Tomas Kalas for a club-record fee.

The 26-year-old has penned a four-year contract in BS3 after City beat off competition from several clubs for his signature.

Kalas was on loan at Ashton Gate from Chelsea during the 2018/19 season and instantly became a popular and dominant figure at the heart of City’s defence.

The Czech Republic international made 41 appearances in City colours, contributing to 11 clean sheets.

Gallery: Kalas is a Robin

Kalas becomes the seventh signing this summer and City Chief Executive Mark Ashton said: “We are thrilled Tomas has committed his future to Bristol City for a club-record fee and I know it is a signing which City supporters have been eagerly hoping for.

“A player of Tomas’ stature naturally attracts a lot of interest but we worked hard to secure his services which I believe shows a lot about our ambition. All credit as well to Chelsea who have been excellent to deal with regarding Jay (Dasilva) and now Tomas.”

Head Coach Lee Johnson said: “We saw last season the qualities he brings and Tomas is exactly the type of player we want to build our team around. Not only is he a fantastic footballer but someone with a winning mentality.

“A lot of credit should go to Mark Ashton, Jon Lansdown and the City Board for the hard work in making this happen.”

After signing for Chelsea in 2010 Kalas rejoined former side Sigma Olomouc on loan before spending two seasons at Vitesse Arnhem. He spent the first of two loan spells at FC Cologne before he was recalled to his parent club and made his Chelsea debut in a 2-0 win against Arsenal in October 2013.

Kalas would return to the German club on loan though, before having a temporary spell at Middlesbrough, helping the Smoggies reach the Premier League. He then spent the 2016/17 and 2017/18 seasons with Fulham, whom he also helped win promotion to the top flight, before his loan spell in BS3.

The 2019/20 away kit, as modelled by Kalas above, will be available in due course for pre-order with pricing, sizing and sale dates to be announced.

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