Nicolo Zaniolo will soon become an Aston Villa player as boss Unai Emery looks to strengthen his forward options at Villa Park. The club are particularly keen to bolster this area of the pitch after Emi Buendia suffered a serious injury during pre-season. What we all want to know is exactly what this deal looks like, we have all the information you need.
Zaniolo, a 24-year-old Italian, currently plays his football in Turkey for Galatasaray, having previously spent five years in Serie A with Roma. Prior to that, he was in the Inter squad, and Villa looks set to be the latest big club on his playing CV. With this move, he'll also be hoping to win back his place in the Italy national team squad.
As mentioned, the club lost Buendia prior to the Premier League season commencing with a significant knee problem. He is likely to be out of action for some time, and Emery has acted quickly to replace him. Transfer journalist Fabrizio Romano has confirmed that the player will be in Birmingham on Wednesday to complete his medical, prior to signing the contract.
🇮🇹 Nicolo Zaniolo's player characteristics:
🔴 Holding on to the ball
🔴 Passing pic.twitter.com/7idGuo12fH
— WhoScored.com (@WhoScored) August 12, 2023
Now, the in's and out's of this deal. It was first initially reported by Mail Online that Zaniolo would be leaving Galatasaray for Villa, having only signed for the club as recently as February earlier this year. It will be an initial loan deal that takes the playmaker to the Premier League club, which will cost them £3million.
Attached to this loan is the option for the deal to become permanent, where Aston Villa would then have to pay a total of roughly £19million to do so. This would become an automatic signing based upon certain conditions, maybe if he plays a certain number of games.
With the club starting the new season in poor fashion, losing 4-1 away to Newcastle United, they are understandably keen to move on and bring some good news in the form of an exciting new signing.
In addition to Buendia being out long-term through injury, the same can also be said of defender Tyrone Mings, so it remains to be seen if Emery will also look to add another body to this part of his roster. For now, Zaniolo will come in and fight for his place. He will hope to sign in time to potentially make his debut when his soon to be new side entertains Everton at Villa Park this weekend.
Bu akşam son kez Galatasaray taraftarıyla vedalaşıp yarın gitmek istemiş. Vallahi, billahi seni çok seviyoruz Nicolo Zaniolo.❤️ pic.twitter.com/JVckYtLdkT
— Grande Gala (@ErayCora9) August 15, 2023
The versatility of Zaniolo makes his a particularly useful asset to have in the squad. Although perhaps most at home in a number ten role, he can also do a job out wide for the team. Expect to see him floating around the final third looking to get on the ball. Having only been at Galatasaray for six months, it would appear he has found the lure of the Premier League too much of a good opportunity to reject.
Aston Villa sporting director Monchi previously worked at Roma during the time when Zaniolo was signed by the club now managed by Jose Mourinho. This is believed to be quite a key part of this deal going through, as the relationship between the pair is strong. Therefore, this comes to the benefit of Aston Villa, who have will have a new talented forward in their team.