West Ham to sign Shakhtar Donetsk defender Razvan Rat

West Ham have agreed to sign Romania defender Razvan Rat on an initial one-year deal when his contract with Shakhtar Donetsk expires on 1 July.

The 31-year-old left-back has made 88 international appearances for Romania.

He played in both of Shakhtar's Champions League games against Chelsea earlier this season.

Razvan Rat in focus

  • Rat was born in Piatra-Olt, Romania on 26 May 1981.
  • He has played 88 times for his country, and has captained Romania since 2011.
  • In 10 years with Shakhtar Donetsk, Rat helped the club to seven league titles, four Ukrainian Cups and the Uefa Cup in 2009.

"I'm hugely happy that we've got a player of his experience and his character," West Ham boss Sam Allardyce told the club's website. 

Captain of his country since 2011, Rat has helped Shakhtar to seven league titles, the Uefa Cup in 2009 and made over 50 Champions League appearances in a 10-year stint with the Ukrainian club.

"Shakhtar had offered him a very good contract, but his ambition was to come and try his abilities and skills in England," added Allardyce.

"He speaks perfect English, which he taught himself, and that shows the discipline and the character of the man. Discipline, character and ability are the three big things in the Premier League."

West Ham have the option to extend Rat's contract by one or two years.

West Ham have also agreed a fee of around £15m with Liverpool for Andy Carroll, although the England striker has yet to decide if he wants to join the Hammers permanently following his season-long loan spell.