Aston Villa are on the verge of signing attacking midfielder Nicolo Zaniolo from Galatasaray after transfer expert Fabrizio Romano gave the move his customary ‘here we go’ confirmation.
Zaniolo was a target for both Tottenham Hotspur and Bournemouth in the January transfer window. Bournemouth even struck an agreement over his move, but he did not want to go to the Vitality Stadium and opted to join Galatasaray from Roma instead.
But Zaniolo has still been linked with a switch to the Premier League in recent months. Newcastle United have set their sights on him, but Villa soon barged past Eddie Howe’s team to put themselves in pole position for a transfer.
On Monday, reports emerging from Turkey revealed how Villa had ‘accelerated’ their talks to capture Zaniolo. And those discussions have now resulted in an agreement.
Writing on Twitter, Romano has revealed the Italian’s switch to Villa Park can now be considered complete. He has given the transfer his ‘here we go’ seal of approval.
Villa have agreed a loan-to-buy deal with Galatasaray worth €27million (£23.2m) including add-ons. Zaniolo will spend the season on loan at Villa, and Unai Emery’s side will have the option to buy him in summer 2024.
The Villans easily managed to sort out personal terms with the 24-year-old as he ‘wanted Villa’ as a priority transfer option. Zaniolo’s medical will take place on Wednesday, with the signing likely to be announced by Villa on either Thursday or Friday.
Nicolo Zaniolo to replace injured Aston Villa star
Zaniolo will help replace Villa playmaker Emi Buendia, who has suffered a significant knee injury and will therefore be out for a lengthy period. Defender Tyrone Mings will also miss most of the campaign after sustaining a bad knee injury of his own.
Villa paying £23.2m for Zaniolo will see their spending this summer rise to around the £110m mark. They have already broken their transfer record by landing winger Moussa Diaby in a £51.9m deal, while also parting with £35m to sign centre-back Pau Torres from Emery’s former club Villarreal.
Zaniolo could end up being a great signing from Villa. He is versatile, with the ability to play as a central attacking midfielder, second striker or right winger. He also has good pedigree, having won the Europa Conference League with Roma and the the Turkish Super Lig title with Galatasaray.