By Tom Blackburn
Tommy Elphick has joined Aston Villa after completing a transfer from Bournemouth, it was confirmed on Monday night.
The Midlands giants have won the race to sign the defender after having a £3million offer accepted last week for the 28-year-old former Cherries captain.
Villa announced on their official Twitter account on Monday evening that Elphick had signed a three-year contract to become the first signing of new manager Roberto Di Matteo.
— Aston Villa FC (@AVFCOfficial) June 20, 2016
It was reported on Monday that Elphick had cut short his honeymoon in Italy to return to England and undergo a medical at Villa Park.
It is a boost for Di Matteo to have clinched the signing of the experienced centre-back after Championship rivals Leeds tried to hijack their move.
Bournemouth reportedly offered Elphick an extension to his existing deal at Vitality Stadium but the length of the new contract was a sticking point for the player.
Elphick was an apprentice at Brighton and made his debut for them in 2005 before joining the Cherries in 2012.
He was hampered by an ankle injury in the recently completed domestic season and made only 14 appearances for the Premier League side.
Elphick captained Bournemouth to two promotions – from League One to the Premier League – in the space of three seasons.
In other Aston Villa news, Di Matteo is lining up a swoop for a Premier League ace as he steps up his rebuild of the relegated club.