MARVELOUS NAKAMBA finally got the greenlight to join English Premiership side Aston Villa yesterday, and underwent a medical, ending days of negotiations which had threatened the move.
The 25-year-old Warriors midfielder is expected to be confirmed as a Villa player today, in the event he passed his medical, in a £11 million deal from Belgian side Club Brugge.
Nakamba is set to become the fourth Zimbabwean to play in the English Premiership after Bruce Grobbelaar, Peter Ndlovu and Benjani Mwaruwari.
Tendayi Darikwa won the English Championship title with Burnley but was never given a minute of action in the Premiership.
Not since 2011, when Benjani left Blackburn, has Zimbabwe had a player in the English top-flight league.
Various British media reports yesterday indicated Nakamba flew into England on Wednesday night after Villa thrashed out a deal with Club Brugge, ending weeks of speculation over the want-away midfielder’s future.
Respected British news sites such as the Sky Sports, The Telegraph and The Daily Mailconfirmed Brugge and Villa had resolved the sticking points after settling on fee to pave way for the deal to sail through.
“Aston Villa have agreed a £10.75million fee with Club Brugge for Marvelous Nakamba.
“The Zimbabwe international midfielder will become Villa’s 10th signing of the summer once he passes his medical and obtains a work permit.
“Should the move go through, it will take Villa’s total spending for the summer to over £100 million,” reported the Daily Mail.
The clubs were yet to make an official announcement yesterday, pending the results of the medicals.
The media has been awash with the Nakamba transfer saga over the last 10 days after the player decided to go on strike to push for his release from Brugge.
He was not happy that he did not get enough game time last season under Ivan Leko and had made up his mind to leave after learning of offers from different parts of Europe. Herald
Club Brugge, however, kept turning down offers and had pushed the fee high up as far as £12 million from an initial price tag of £8 million.
Villa have been tracking the 25-year-old, who reportedly attracted interest from England, Germany and Italy. German side FC Köln had offered between 6 million to 7 million euros for the player, who joined Brugge on a reported £4 million fee two years ago.
Nakamba has had an eventful month since his return from the Afcon tournament in Egypt.
He has been refusing to train for the last two weeks to push for his transfer after the initial bid from Villa was turned down by the Belgian side.
The £11 million transfer fee will rank as the highest for any Zimbabwean player.
Villa have also completed the £8.75 million signing of Egypt international Trezeguet earlier this week and Brazilian midfielder Douglas Luiz for £15 million from Manchester City.
The Midlands club have already splashed more than £100 million on players and appear set to have a complete overhaul of the team that took them into the Premiership.