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Controversial midfielder Morrison released by West Ham

February 8, 2015

LONDON (AP) — West Ham terminated the contract of controversial midfielder Ravel Morrison with immediate effect on Sunday, three years after taking a chance on one of British football’s wasted talents following his release by Manchester United.

The 22-year-old Morrison played just 24 games for the Premier League club in a spell marred by disciplinary and off-the-field issues. During his time at Upton Park, he was sent on loan to Birmingham, Queens Park Rangers and Cardiff City in the second tier.

Morrison had signed a pre-contract agreement to join Lazio in July, when his West Ham deal was set to expire, but could now link up with the Italian club five months earlier than expected.

He can’t play for Lazio, having already featured for two clubs this season — West Ham and Cardiff — but the Serie A outfit could decide to bring Morrison to Rome early to train with the team and settle into his new environment.

“They are decisions which I’m waiting for the club to make,” Lazio coach Stefano Pioli said. “But it’s clear that even if he can’t play, it could still be an advantage for us to have him here a few months early.”

United described Morrison, a skillful and quick wide midfielder, as having the “potential to be one of the real stars of his generation” and former United manager Alex Ferguson admired his talents. But the then-champions let him go in January 2012 after a contract dispute.

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