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Aston Villa sign striker Danny Ings from Southampton

:Headline: Aston Villa sign striker Danny Ings from Southampton:
The 29-year-old has agreed a three-year contract.
Sports Mole

Aston Villa have signed striker Danny Ings from Southampton for an undisclosed fee.

The 29-year-old former England international has agreed a three-year contract at Villa Park and he arrives on the same day Villa announced the signing of forward Leon Bailey on a deal running until 2025.

Villa boss Dean Smith said of Ings on the club’s website: “Danny is an outstanding Premier League footballer who has scored goals wherever he has played.

“He is also a top professional with a great character who will be a leader in our squad and a role model for our rapidly developing young academy players who are now in and around the first team.

“I am delighted to welcome Danny to our great club.”

The departure of their top scorer will be a major blow to Southampton ahead of the new season and manager Ralph Hasenhuttl admits they need to invest to replace him.

Speaking after their pre-season win over Levante, Hasenhuttl told the club website: “I think it’s a deal where we only have winners on every side. We can replace him and we must replace him to get a player who scores goals for us.

“I know that we have a few others in our team who must step up now, but it is clear that we have this money, and we need this money for maybe bringing two more players into this squad that we need.”

Ings, who scored 13 goals for Saints last season, joins fellow summer recruits Bailey, Emi Buendia and Ashley Young at Villa Park.

However, Villa are braced to lose captain Jack Grealish to Manchester City in a British record £100million, according to reports.

The Premier League champions have been heavily linked with the 25-year-old all summer and reportedly made their offer last Friday.

Ings was a regular scorer for Saints (Richard Heathcote/PA)

Earlier in the day, Jamaica forward Bailey completed a move from Bayer Leverkusen for a reported fee of around £30million.

Smith is looking forward to working with his new recruit, saying: “Leon is a hugely exciting young striker with great pace and creativity.

“He has enjoyed a successful career at Leverkusen and we are now looking forward to watching him show his skills and talents for Aston Villa in the Premier League.”

Bailey, who had reportedly caught the eye of a number of top English clubs last season, scored 39 goals in three-and-a-half campaigns for Leverkusen in the Bundesliga, as well as featuring in the Champions League and Europa League.

And the 10-cap international is now relishing the challenge of showing what he can do in the Premier League.

“For me, it’s a great club with a big history and it’s the right step for me. I’m excited to get started,” he said on the club’s website.

“It’s always been somewhere that I’ve wanted to play. I feel like now is the right time and I’m excited about it.

“Hopefully I can do what I do best and have a great season in the Premier League.”

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