NORWICH have completed the signing of striker Gary Hooper from Celtic for an undisclosed fee believed to be around £5 million.
The 25-year-old, who scored 31 goals for the Scottish champions last season, becomes the Canaries’ seventh summer signing after he agreed personal terms and passed a medical at Carrow Road.
Norwich manager Chris Hughton first tried to sign Hooper in January and the Barclays Premier League club fought off competition from QPR to finally land the prolific frontman.
Hooper has signed a three-year deal with Norwich having an option on a further year. The fee was undisclosed.
Hooper has been Celtic’s leading goalscorer for the last three seasons, having joined from Scunthorpe in 2010 for £2.4million.
Celtic manager Neil Lennon today described Hooper as the club’s best striker since Henrik Larsson and said his departure was a “huge loss” for the Bhoys.
Hooper told the Norwich website, www.canaries.co.uk: “There’s been a lot of speculation going back to January and I’m pleased to have finally put pen to paper and joined Norwich.
“I can’t wait to get down to work, to get training with the lads and working with the coaching staff. I knew Chris Hughton and Colin Calderwood from my youth days at Spurs so it will be great to be back working with them in the Premier League.
“I have scored goals at every level I have played at and the challenge of playing in the Premier League is really exciting to me.”
Hooper is the second striker recruited this summer by Hughton, following the record signing of Dutch international Ricky Van Wolfswinkel for £8.5million from Sporting Lisbon.
Norwich have also signed Dutch midfielder Leroy Fer from FC Twente, Birmingham wing Nathan Redmond, left-backs Javier Garrido and Martin Olsson plus the goalkeeper Carlo Nash.
Hooper won two Scottish Premier League titles at Celtic, two Scottish FA Cups and he won the SPL Golden Boot in the 2011-12 season.
Lennon said: “For me he has been one of my best signings in so many ways - value for money, the improvement in the player, his goals and his link up play.
“I think he’s been the best striker here since Henrik and he will be a huge loss to us.
“He has aspirations to play for England and to play in the Premier League. I wish him well. Part of me wants to strangle him but you don’t want to stop the progression of some individuals.
“Gary feels the next step forward to try and break into the England team is to play in the Premier League.”
Hooper sounded out the move to Norwich with Celtic goalkeeper Fraser Forster, who won a League One title medal during a loan spell with the club in 2009-10.
“I had a chat with Fraser about Norwich and he said it was a great club, with great fans and in a really nice part of the world. He said he really enjoyed his time here,” Hooper said.