Page says Cobblers have signed a '˜huge character' in defender Zakuani

New Cobblers signing Gaby ZakuaniNew Cobblers signing Gaby Zakuani
New Cobblers signing Gaby Zakuani
The Cobblers have signed former Peterborough United central defender Gabriel Zakuani, with manager Rob Page labelling the player a '˜huge character'.

The DR Congo international has put pen to paper on a one-year deal, and becomes Page’s fifth signing of the summer.

The 30-year-old, who was once bought by Fulham for £1m and cost Posh £380,000 when he moved to London Road in 2009, was released by Peterborough at the end of last season.

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“Gaby is a huge character and is an excellent addition,” said manager Rob Page.

“He will be a big presence, not just on the pitch but in the dressing room as well and will be perfect for some of the younger members of the squad to look up to and learn from.

“He has given fine service to the clubs he has represented and I’m sure he will do the same for Northampton Town.

“For a central defender he is an excellent age, he has only just turned 30, but he has a wealth of experience playing in league one and the Championship and that is important for us, as a squad coming up into this level to have players, like Gaby and Alex Revell, who have played a lot in league one and know what it is all about.

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“We now have four senior central defenders in the squad and they will provide excellent competition for each other.

“I am looking forward to pre-season, to getting down to work and giving the players the opportunity to show me and the rest of the staff what they can do.”

Zakuani was a big favourite with the Peterborough supporters, making 253 appearances in the blue and white and scoring nine goals.

Peterborough manager Grant McCann’s decision to release the player has divided opinion among Posh supporters, but McCann is intent on reshaping his squad following what was a disappointing campaign for them last season.

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Zakuani began his career at Leyton Orient and he made 98 appearances for the Os before being sold to Fulham in 2006.

He played just twice for the west London club and after loan spells at Stoke City and Peterborough, he was signed permanently by Posh in January, 2009.

He spent six months playing in Greece for Kalloni, but returned to Peterborough in 2014 and played 27 times for Posh last season.

Zakuani, who turned 30 on May 31, also has international pedigree having won 22 caps for Democratic Republic of the Congo, playing in the 2013 African Cup of Nations.

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He also has history with the Cobblers, making his Peterborough debut against Northampton in a 1-1 draw at Sixfields in September, 2008, and being sent off the last time the two sides met in a competitive encounter in March, 2009 - Posh still going on to win the match 1-0.

Zakuani played his part in two Peterborough promotion campaigns from League One in 2009 and 2011.