By Tom Blackburn
Goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini has revealed he has joined Aston Villa from Hellas Verona and revealed the opportunity was too good to turn down.
Football Insider reported on Wednesday afternoon that the deal was set to go through within the next 24 hours after terms were agreed.
It is Aston Villa’s second signing of the summer transfer window, after centre back Scott Elphick arrived at Villa Park last month.
In an interview with Sky Sports Italia, via Football Italia, the 21-year-old goalkeeper confirmed on Wednesday night he is moving to Villa Park as he explained that he simply could not refuse the opportunity.
“I am very happy for this opportunity”, Gollini said to Sky Italia. “I am a little sorry to leave Italy, but it was a very important opportunity.
“I am going to a club with a very glorious stadium with 40,000 seats. I want to thank Verona for these two years.”
The Birmingham Mail claims that the 21-year-old shot stopper has agreed personal terms with the Villains ahead of a £4.1million move from Hellas Verona this summer.
The report said Roberto Di Matteo met with the Italy Under-20 international over the weekend to outline his plans for the future and Gollini was said to have been impressed.
The 6ft 2in keeper came through the ranks at Manchester United before returning to his homeland in 2014 and now could become Aston Villa’s first choice goalkeeper.
Di Matteo has been eyeing a move for a new keeper after noting the poor performances of both Brad Guzan and Mark Bunn this season.
Gollini made 27 appearances in all competitions this season as Verona were relegated from Serie A and despite still having three years on his current contract, may be tempted by a move to the Championship.
The report also said Di Matteo had been given the green light from new keeper coach Massimo Battara, who said the move represents good value.
In other Aston Villa news, they are set for a major recruitment boost as they line up a senior man.