Aston Villa sign Watkins from Brentford for reported club-record fee

Aston Villa have confirmed the signing of striker Ollie Watkins from Brentford for a reported club-record fee of £28million.

Watkins, who finished level with Aleksandar Mitrovic as the Championship’s top scorer on 26 goals last season, has penned a five-year deal at Villa Park.

The transfer fee could potentially rise to £33m with add-ons and it surpasses the £22m Villa spent to sign previous record signing Wesley Moraes from Club Brugge last year.

Dean Smith previously worked with Watkins during his time as Brentford boss and turned to the Englishman after Callum Wilson rejected Villa to join Premier League rivals Newcastle United.

Villa announced the arrival on their official website on Wednesday, and their new signing said: “I am so excited to join Aston Villa and to reunite with Dean Smith.

He’s here and he’s perfect. #WatkinsAnnounced

— Aston Villa (@AVFCOfficial) September 9, 2020

“I cannot wait to wear the famous claret and blue in the Premier League. I want to do something special here and score some goals.”

Smith has also added defender Matty Cash to his squad during the close season and is delighted with this latest capture.

“Ollie has developed into one of the most sought-after strikers in the country and we are looking forward to seeing him show his great qualities in an Aston Villa shirt,” he said.

“He is a hugely determined character who has both the ability and personality to succeed at the highest level.”

Villa begin their new season with an EFL Cup second-round tie against Burton Albion next Tuesday, before facing Sheffield United in their Premier League opener six days later.

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