Ashley finally becomes a Villan

ASHLEY Young from Stevenage this week sealed his £9.65 million move to Aston Villa. Young, 21, passed a medical on Tuesday after he verbally agreed to join the Midlands club over the weekend. He has now signed a four and a half year contract which will

ASHLEY Young from Stevenage this week sealed his £9.65 million move to Aston Villa.

Young, 21, passed a medical on Tuesday after he "verbally agreed" to join the Midlands club over the weekend.

He has now signed a four and a half year contract which will keep him at Villa Park until the summer of 2011.

The deal is worth around £30,000 a week plus bonuses for the ex-Watford star who looks set to make his debut in the Premiership clash with Newcastle at St James' Park on January 31.


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Young's new manager Martin O'Neill said: "He has got enormous potential and I think he will fulfil that.

"He is a really talented player. I have seen a lot of him and I am going to back my judgement.

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"My own view is he will prove terrific value. He is only a young fellow and I have no doubt at all he is good enough.

"You think along the lines of 'Will somebody be of value over the next four or five years' and you base your decision on that.

"I believe Ashley is capable of great things."

The former John Henry Newman and Barclay schoolboy will not be the first local man to wear the famous claret and blue at Villa Park.

Kevin Phillips recently switched clubs to Championship high-flyers West Bromwich Albion for £700,000.

Wearing the number 20 shirt, he scored on his debut for Villa with a spectacular long range strike against Leicester City.

After recovering from injury at the start of the 2005-6 season, Phillips cemented his place in Villa folklore following his winner against bitter rivals Birmingham City.

However, a series of short-term injuries meant he was unable to get a regular position in the first team and the arrival of O'Neill hastened the exit to West Brom of the former England man who also played at Watford early in his career.

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