Coventry City have snared their second signing of the week after capturing the signature of goalkeeper Keiren Westwood, who almost swapped catching footballs as a professional for catching criminals as a policeman.
Westwood, who almost quite the game to join Greater Manchester Police, signed a three-year deal for an undisclosed fee, believed to be around £750,000, from Carlisle United.
Sky Blues manager Chris Coleman said he was delighted to complete his second signing of the week after snapping up Iceland international midfielder Aron Einar Gunnarsson from Dutch side AZ Alkmaar.
Talented 23-year-old shot-stopper Westwood has made 153 appearances in four seasons for the League One outfit.
His impeccable form last season was recognised when he was named in the PFA League One Team of the Year and he was called up to Giovanni Trapattoni’s Republic of Ireland squad for the recent games against Serbia and Colombia.
“We are delighted that Keiren has chosen to join us at Coventry,” said Coleman. “He is an excellent young goalkeeper who has all the credentials to be a huge success here.
“He has enjoyed his time with Carlisle and is ready to take a step up. He’s a big, confident lad, very agile and exactly the sort of player we are looking to bring in.
“I don’t want to bring in players who have done it and are 34 or 35, although that isn’t to say I won’t bring in players with experience, but Keiren is hungry and ambitious to have success with Coventry.”
Sky Blues chairman Ray Ranson believes the club has signed a player with the potential to become a top Barclays Premier League player.
“I believe he is one of the best young keepers outside the Premiership,” Ranson said. “We’ve done really well to get him as we know a number of other clubs were interested.”
Carlisle manager John Ward was resigned to losing one of his top young talents.
“I think it was inevitable that Keiren was going to go higher, because everyone has recognised the talent that he has,” he said.
“I am delighted for him on a personal level, because he was worked extremely hard, but obviously I am disappointed for us as a club, because we are losing an excellent goalkeeper.”