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Villa complete N'Zogbia signing
Published : 29 Jul 2011 19:18:00Rss feed
Aston Villa have completed the signing of midfielder Charles N'Zogbia from Wigan on a five-year contract. The club confirmed on their website that the 25-year-old France international had passed a medical and would be available for next Wednesday's pre-season fixture against Derby at Pride Park and for the August 6 date with Braga in Portugal. "I am really happy and extremely excited to sign for Aston Villa," N'Zogbia told avfc.co.uk. "It is a great club and it is a really big step for me in my career, so I am sure I will enjoy my football here. "I think it is going to be a really good season and hopefully I'll do well here. "I can't wait to meet my new team-mates, play with them and work together to do something special this season. "Alex McLeish is a strong manager and I think he is going to build a really good team for this season." Neither club disclosed the fee, which is believed to be around £9.5million. The move sees N'Zogbia reunited with former Newcastle team-mate Shay Given, who joined from Manchester City earlier this month, and also means Villa boss Alex McLeish has finally succeeded in signing N'Zogbia after two failed attempts. The Scot looked to have landed the services of the player 12 months ago when in charge at Birmingham only for the deal to collapse at the 11th hour over personal terms. Then McLeish's bid to sign the former Newcastle man earlier this summer was halted when Wigan rejected an initial £9m bid from Villa. Wigan manager Roberto Martinez was sorry to lose a player of N'Zogbia's quality, telling www.wiganlatics.co.uk: "We're all disappointed to lose a player like Charles N'Zogbia, who has been fantastic for Wigan Athletic over the last two years and who we feel has grown as a player in that time too. "There have been some very enjoyable moments during his time at the club, he made his international debut with France and scored his first goal for his country whilst a Wigan Athletic player - memories I'm sure he'll always treasure as we will. "Now is the time for him to move on to a club who have matched the market valuation for him and allow us to move on, reinvest and take our football club onto another level." N'Zogbia announced himself on the Premier League stage after joining Newcastle as a teenager from Le Havre in September 2004. He made 118 appearances for the Magpies before moving to Wigan in January 2009 and became a key player at the DW Stadium, helping the Latics avoid relegation from the Barclays Premier League on the final day of last term. He scored 15 goals in 83 Premier League appearances for Wigan. His displays for the north west club caught the eye of France coach Laurent Blanc, who handed N'Zogbia an international debut against Norway last August. He scored his first goal for Les Bleus with a deflected effort while winning his second cap in last month's 1-0 friendly win over Poland.