Breaking News . . . Craig Bellamy signs

West Ham United is delighted to announce the signing of Wales international captain Craig Bellamy from Liverpool for a fee of £7.5million.

The 27-year-old striker put pen to paper on a five-year contract at Upton Park this morning to become Alan Curbishley's fourth summer signing.

Born in Cardiff on July 13, 1979, Craig left home as a teenager to begin his career with Norwich City, where he made his debut against Crystal Palace in March 1997, before going on to net 32 goals in 84 league and cup appearances for the Canaries.

In the summer of 2000, he earned a £6.5million move to Coventry City but, after suffering relegation in his first season at Highfield Road, was again the target of Premier League clubs and, in June 2001, Newcastle United manager Bobby Robson swooped to sign him for £6million.

The Welshman enjoyed a fantastic start to his career at St James' Park, scoring on his debut in an Intertoto Cup match against Belgian side Lokeren, before going on to win the PFA Young Player of the Year award at the end of his first campaign, in which he scored 16 goals to form a potent strikeforce alongside Alan Shearer and help the Magpies qualify for the Champions League.

Following the arrival of Graeme Souness as manager in August 2004, Craig's Newcastle career hit a rocky patch and, in January 2005, he joined Celtic on loan, scoring seven goals in just 12 appearances.

In July 2005, his former national team coach Mark Hughes paid £5million to take Bellamy to Blackburn Rovers, where he again proved his Premier League quality, scoring 13 goals in 27 appearances at Ewood Park, a strike-rate that alerted Liverpool to splash out £6million for his services last summer.

He managed nine goals in 27 appearances for the Reds, including a vital Champions League strike against Barcelona at the Nou Camp that helped Rafael Benitez's men on their way to eventually reaching the final against AC Milan in May, when he was an unused substitute as the Italians sealed a 2-0 victory.

Craig made his senior international debut for Wales against Jamaica at the age of just 18, and has so far earned 45 caps for his country, scoring 13 goals. In October 2006, he was handed the captaincy by national team coach John Toshack in the absence of Ryan Giggs for a Euro 2008 qualifier against Slovakia.

At the end of last season, following the retirement of Giggs from international football, the striker was confirmed as the country's new captain on a permanent basis, and will now look forward to joining his national team colleagues Danny Gabbidon and James Collins at Upton Park.

Exclusive reaction from Craig Bellamy and Alan Curbishley to follow soon on…