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Saturday 11 January 2014

On this day in 2005: Ashton makes his move to Norwich City

Looking back at Premier League history, we recall Dean Ashton becoming a top-flight player

  • Dean Ashton scored seven goals in 16 Premier League appearances for Norwich

  • The striker scored 22 top-flight goals overall before injury forced him to retire in 2008

Premierleague.com rifles through the annals of the Barclays Premier League to find significant events.

11 January 2005 - Norwich seal record £3m move for Asthon

Norwich City presented their record signing Dean Ashton, who cost £3m from Crewe Alexandra.

The England under-21 international signed a three-and-a-half-year deal, with the option of another year. It was also a record fee for Crewe, who built a reputation for producing a number of talented youngsters from their academy.

Ashton was top scorer in the Championship with 17 goals and had attracted a lot of attention before the Canaries swooped for his signature.

Canaries manager Nigel Worthington said: "I'm delighted that we've been able to attract such a young talent to Carrow Road."

Ashton left Crewe on good terms, with Alex manager Dario Gradi saying: "It is time for him to go on and test himself at a higher level. He is ready and heading in the right direction.

"Norwich are a good club and a well-run club and it is a great chance for him. I know people will be disappointed at Dean going, but the exciting thing for us is that there is a chance for others to come through."

Ashton proved an instant hit at Carrow Road, scoring seven goals in 16 Barclays Premier League matches in the second half of the season.

He signed a one-year contract extension in August but the following January was sold to West Ham United for £7.25m.

However, in the following August he broke his left ankle while training with England in Athens before a friendly against Greece.

The injury kept him out of the entire 2006-07 season and although he made a comeback in 2007-08, he was injured again that summer and was eventually forced to retire at the age of 26.

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Key Points

  • Premierleague.com looks back through the annals of history of the competition
  • A memorable event or match from each day of the year will be selected
  • We remember when Norwich City signed England U21 striker Dean Ashton from Crewe Alexandra