Date: 14th July 2007 at 12:17am
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Sylvain Distin became the first signing of the summer when on 22nd May he signed a 3-year contract, arriving as a free agent from City.

The Frenchman progressed through the stages in French football; starting at non-league level before giants PSG eventually signed him. A year with PSG came to an end with a loan move to Newcastle – this was successful enough for them to want to sign him but City got him for £4m in 2002.

Successful form on the pitch – despite the odd ricket, some very bad ones early on – saw him ‘reportedly’ interesting Liverpool, Newcastle and others time and again, but he stayed.

Last summer it was looking like he would move away from City as his contract moved into the final year. He would not sign a contract so he was stripped of the captaincy, but stayed despite a £3m move to Pompey or Boro expected.

Still no contract was signed when the season ended and he confirmed early this summer that he was leaving City ‘for a new challenge’, this new challenge came a day later when he signed for Pompey. Liverpool reportedly made a late bid to sign him but we saw them off.

Distin has had his moments during his time in England – to sometimes question his ability as a top class central defender, but these moments are far outweighed by the good ones.

Titus Bramble or Sylvain Distin? Although my thinking is still that in the right team, with the right level of quality and experience around him Bramble might still be a fine defender, Distin’s experience and quality makes him the better option.

He will add further strength to the defensive ranks, leaving us with three genuine class central defenders that could get into most other sides in this league.

PLAY UP POMPEY!