Brentford have signed Greek international striker Nikos Karelis, subject to international clearance.
Nikos was a free agent after leaving KRC Genk in the summer. He was at Griffin Park to watch the game against Hull City on Saturday and agreed a one-year deal to join The Bees, with a Club option for an extra year. He signed his contract today, Thursday 22 August, after completing a medical and will train with his new team-mates tomorrow.
Nikos, 27, spent last season on loan at PAOK Football Club in Greece having played for Genk since 2016. He scored 23 goals in the Belgian top flight in two-and-a-half seasons that were affected by injury. He played 75 games in all competitions for Genk and scored 33 goals, including in the Europa League.
Nikos, a left-footed player who has been primarily used as a central striker throughout his career, came through the youth ranks at Ergotelis and played his first professional games for them. After a year in Russia with Amkar Perm he joined Panathinaikos in 2013. In three years with Panathinaikos he scored 36 goals in 113 games in all competitions, including 19 in 2014/15, his last full season in Greek football before a move to Belgium in January 2016.
Thomas Frank, Brentford FC Head Coach, said: “Nikos is a player that will reinforce our options in attacking areas. We were looking for an extra player before the transfer deadline earlier this month and now we have a very good addition. Nikos hasn’t played as much football as he would have liked in the past two or three years, and that is one of the reasons we were able to get a player of his calibre into the Club.
“Earlier in his career he showed everyone what he was capable of, but injuries have held him back a bit. He is fit now and while he may take a while to be 100 per cent ready to start in the Championship, I know he will have an impact. He is a striker that suits the way we want to play. He can link with the midfield and makes intelligent runs on and off the ball to help the attack. He is also very good out of possession and will help our pressing game. I look forward to welcoming him to the squad.”
Nikos has been a regular for his country, playing for them at Under-17, Under-19 and Under-21 level before making his full international debut in 2014. He has scored three international goals in 19 senior games, including one on his debut against Finland. In 62 games for Greece at all levels he has scored 18 goals.