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Villa sign Delph


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Aston Villa today completed the signing of Leeds United's under-21 England international Fabian Delph.

The rumoured fee is between £6m-£8m + add-ons but the fee is not official.

Delph was one of the hottest properties in English football with Arsenal, Manchester City, Everton, Spurs & ourselves rumoured to have been after the youngster for a long time.

Delph is primarily an attacking central midfielder who has come up through the ranks at Leeds United's academy after being bought as an 11-year old from Bradford City. The Leeds fans will be loathe to lose one of their star players, but they will at least be getting a very good price for a youngster who is untried above League One level, even if 12% of the fee has to go on to the Bantams.

Despite being an u21 international (18/11/08 v Czech Rep.), Delph will only turn 20 this November and has only made 47 appearances, 7 sub appearances and scored 6 goals for the Leeds first team in all competitions since his debut as a sub on the final day of the 06/07 season. It was only in the 08/09 season that Delph was used regularly and despite being effectively his debut season he managed to win the Football League's Young Footballer of the Year award.

Fresh from our success in the Peace Cup, Martin O'Neill has wasted no time in wrapping up this deal and it was a point of pride to see the Leeds United official site make an announcement wishing to "place on record our appreciation for the honourable manner in which Aston Villa have conducted their interest in the player". Kudos to the Villa for being a shining example of how things can and should be done, at a time when other clubs are forgetting their morals left, right & centre.

Delph comes in to the Villa squad at an interesting time. Fresh from having lost Gareth Barry, there is an opening in the centre for a more attacking midfielder to partner Stiliyan Petrov. Though it is perhaps a little too soon to expect Fabian to slot straight into the side from day one, he will fancy his chances of impressing the boss over the course of the season given our European involvement and the extra games putting pressure on the squad.

Definitely one for the future but with the potential and ability to be a fan favourite from the offset.

VillaTalk welcomes the newest addition to the Villa squad and we wish Fabian the very best for years to come at Villa Park.

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Very good news! Nice to see we have signed a player like this who has the potential to blossom into a real star of the future like Arsenal have shown can be done with Walcott, Ramsey & Wilshere. We should do more of the same when players like this come along and replace Arsenal as the likely destination for players like this who will when looking at our squad see more first team opportunities arising earlier with us than would be the case at Arsenal or at Chelsea or Manchester City where money may be secured earlier at the cost of long term progress. Nice words from Leeds as well and I liked the way they conducted this deal as well.

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