sport

St Etienne sign Tremoulinas

St Etienne have signed Benoit Tremoulinas on loan from Dynamo Kiev after allowing star left-back Faouzi Ghoulam to join Napoli.

The like-for-like change of personnel in Christophe Galtier's squad means St Etienne bring in a transfer fee plus a replacement, in Tremoulinas, with vast experience of the French game.

Tremoulinas began his career at Bordeaux, and after six years in the first team joined Kiev last summer, only for the 28-year-old to find opportunities limited with the Ukrainian capital club. He has joined until the end of the season, St Etienne said in a statement.

Algeria international Ghoulam, who turns 23 on Saturday, had three years of senior experience with St Etienne and drew interest from a host of leading European clubs before Napoli moved decisively to sign him on a four-and-a-half-year deal.

Tremoulinas said on St Etienne's website: "I would like to thank the Dynamo Kiev president, Igor Surkis, who allowed me to be loaned for the next five months. He has given me the opportunity to get some playing time and get myself seen in France.

"I'm very happy to join St Etienne. This is a club which has a lot of ambition for the remainder of the season."

Coach Galtier was pleased with the business achieved by St Etienne, both in bringing in Tremoulinas and allowing Ghoulam to depart.

"Benoit is ambitious," Galtier said. "He has personal goals which can be achieved through collective goals. It's a good opportunity for us after the departure of Faouzi Ghoulam. Faouzi expressed the wish to leave which we occupy fourth place in the league.

"In the summer he attracted interest from another club but I didn't really see the sporting purpose of going there. At Napoli, he has a sporting purpose. He decided to go and the club accepted his departure bringing in money."