November 21, 2005:
Ingi Højsted joins Birmingham City
20 years old midfielder Ingi Højsted has signed a contract with Birmingham City in the Premier Leage.
The contract lasts until June 30th 2006, but if Ingi is to do well, Birmingham have an option to sign Ingi for another 3 years.
In the summer of 2001, Ingi Højsted signed a trainee contract with Arsenal. His three years at Arsenal were marred by injuries and he returned to the Faroe Islands where he joined his youth club B36 Tórshavn, whom he helped win the championship title in 2006.
Ingi Højsted also just recently won the Young Player of the Year award.
Ingi Højsted's good performances for B36 this year, not least in the European Cup, earned him a place among the first eleven in the national team and when the Faroe Islands played their world cup qualifying game away to Israel in October, Birmingham City had sent their spies to watch him, and they only need 45 minutes to make up their mind, because at half time they phoned Ingi Højsted's agent and told him they wanted Ingi!
Even though the transfer window is not due to re-open until January, Ingi Højsted may still sign the contract with Birmingham as he is not tied by a contract with B36 Tórshavn, but the deal is subject to Premier League approval and Ingi won't be eligible to play before the transfer window opens in January.
The plan was the Ingi should be amongst the spectators this night, when Birmingham was supposed to play Bolton in the Premiership. But due to heavy fog around St Andrews, the match was postponed. It was probably Ingi who had dragged the fog with him, as this is not uncommon in the Faroe Islands… :-) In June this summer, several of the Irish supporters missed the world cup qualifying match between the Faroes and Ireland, because the airport was closed down due to heavy fog on match day. (Read more about the Faroe Islands – Irealand game here)
Ingi Højsted is the first player from the Faroe Islands who joins the Premier League. But 2 other Faroese players are presently under trainee-contracts with Premier League clubs. Those are Jóhann Troest Davidsen at Everton and Christian Restorff Mouritsen at Manchester City.
But Ingi Høøjsted's signing with Birmingham doesn't draw the big headlines in English media. But a few have found out that they have signed, but that's about it. In BBC's football forum, somebody has started a thread called: “Who's this Ingi bloke”. The poster doesn't think they need another midfielder. He is then (mistakenly) corrected in the next post, where the poster claims Ingi is a forward. But that is corrected again in the next post, where it rightfully says that Ingi is a midfielder. He also quotes Steve Bruce for saying “Ingi is for the future”, but then asks why they then only have signed him until the end of the summer. – Well, that will be up to Ingi, if the contract shall be extended…
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