June 10, 2019 / 10:32 AM / a month ago

Soccer: Villa sign winger El Ghazi on permanent deal from Lille

Soccer Football - Championship Playoff Final - Aston Villa v Derby County - Wembley Stadium, London, Britain - May 27, 2019 Aston Villa's Anwar El-Ghazi celebrates scoring their first goal with Tammy Abraham Action Images via Reuters/Tony O'Brien

(Reuters) - Aston Villa have announced the signing of winger Anwar El Ghazi from Lille on a four-year deal after his successful loan spell at Villa Park last season, the newly-promoted Premier League club said on Monday.

Netherlands international El Ghazi scored Villa’s opening goal in their 2-1 victory over Derby County in the Championship playoff final last month.

The 24-year-old, who will join the Midlands club for an undisclosed fee, finished the campaign with six goals in 37 appearances in all competitions.

“Anwar proved to everybody at Wembley how good a player he can be for Aston Villa,” Villa manager Dean Smith said in a statement.

“He’s ready for the step up to the Premier League and he’s a young player who has an awful lot of potential. It’s now my job and the job of the coaching staff and Anwar himself to fulfil the potential that he undoubtedly has.”

El Ghazi is Villa’s second signing of the close season, following last week’s addition of Birmingham City forward Jota.

Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge

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