Crewe land Ugarte

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Crewe boss Dario Gradi has moved to fill the void left by Dean Ashton's departure by snapping up Juan Ugarte from Wrexham.

Ashton left Crewe for Norwich in January and was never replaced by Gradi as Alex narrowly avoided the drop to League One.

Gradi has made bolstering his forward line his key priority this summer and he has been successful in persuading Ugarte to swap Wrexham for Crewe.

The 24-year-old Spaniard proved a major hit for Wrexham last term and had attracted widespread interest.

Wrexham were keen to keep him at The Racecourse Ground, but the lure of Championship football proved too strong and the striker signed a two-year deal on Monday.

Ugarte still needs to secure international clearance, but has flown to Crewe's pre-season training camp in Portugal.

Meanwhile, teenage midfielder Michael O'Connor has signed his first professional contract with The Railwaymen.

The Northern Ireland youth international has put pen to paper on a three-year deal after graduating from the club's youth academy.