Michael Chopra striker signs Alloa contract, could make debut against Rangers tonight

Former Newcastle United and Sunderland striker Michael Chopra has signed for Alloa.

Alloa Athletic have confirmed on their official website that former Premier League striker Michael Chopra has joined the club - and could make his debut against Rangers tonight.

Chopra, 31, was a free agent since leaving Indian side Kerala Blasters, and has now joined Alloa until the end of the season in a bid to get his career back on track.

It's easy to forget that Chopra was considered to be the next big thing at Newcastle United having joined the club at the age of ten, and the hype only increased when he scored in the Tyne-Wear derby against Sunderland just 15 seconds after coming on as a substitute.

Yet Chopra couldn't become the long-term replacement for Alan Shearer at St. James' Park, and was eventually sold to Cardiff City in 2006. With 22 goals in 44 games during his only season in South Wales, Chopra showed what he could do in front of goal - and surprisingly joined Sunderland in the summer of 2007.

Eight goals in 42 games wasn't a terrible return, but in 2008 he returned to Cardiff, again succeeding with the Bluebirds before spells with Ipswich Town, Blackpool and then Kerala Blasters.

Chopra has admitted to having a gambling addiction in the past, and whilst that has played a part in his disappointing career in recent years, he could still make an impact in the Scottish Championship.

It adds a certain level of concern for Rangers boss Stuart McCall, whose side face Alloa tonight - and pending international clearance, Chopra could play a part for Alloa at Ibrox.

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