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Contract talks can wait as Vicente returns
Albion today welcomed Vicente back into their ranks – until at least the end of the season.
Seagulls boss Gus Poyet has confirmed no contract talks are planned until his Spanish playmaker has settled in again.
But he is thrilled Vicente has opted to return to Brighton after resolving what were described by the club as personal issues.
The player is under contract until June 2013 after Albion activated a one-year option on his existing deal They had hoped to announce a new contract some time this summer after he shone in 2011-12. That will now be put on hold.
But the key news for Poyet is that Vicente is back after missing fitness tests and then the first week of pre-season training.
Poyet said: “The important thing is he is back. I can’t let you know about a new contract. We are just trying to plan him coming back.
“I spoke to him on the phone and we didn’t even talk about it (a new contract).
“I knew the problem he had. We were always waiting. Sometimes it goes one way and sometimes it goes the other.
“It was a personal issue and we are, as you can imagine, very happy.”
Vicente’s partner recently gave birth to their second child.
The player was being tempted by an offer from second-tier Elche which would have allowed the family to continue living near their home city of Valencia.
Elche were hoping Vicente would engineer a way out of his deal at The Amex in time for training today.
However those hopes ended on Saturday evening when Albion confirmed Vicente’s impending return.
The Seagulls are still five weeks from their first competitive match of the season, although they open their series of friendlies at Maidstone this Saturday.
Poyet added: “We will discuss the best way for us to add Vicente to the squad slowly.
“He is only one week behind really because the previous week was only fitness tests.
“That is something the doctor and the fitness coach will take care of.
“My part is easy because it’s the practical, technical side. We will do it slowly.”
Vicente’s agent Victor Oñate believes Saturday’s announcement represented “a happy ending” and said his player will continue under his current terms.
He added: “Vicente is not playing for money or the contract. He is playing for Brighton because the project there appeals to him and he wants to help them into the Premier League.
“All he is thinking about is coming over and playing and hopefully Brighton are happy with how he plays.
“If the two parties are in agreement, we will definitely agree a new contract. If not, no problem.”
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