Aston Villa are on the verge of completing a £12m deal for Alex Moreno

Aston Villa are on the verge of completing a £12m deal for Real Betis left back Alex Moreno – with Unai Emery set to make his first signing since he was appointed in October

  • Aston Villa are close to agreeing a deal for Real Betis defender Alex Moreno 
  • Moreno is set to cost £12million and will be Unai Emery’s first signing at Villa
  • Emery is also eager to bring in Gerard Deulofeu from Udinese this month 

Aston Villa are finalising the £12million signing of left back Alex Moreno from Real Betis, in what will be their first deal of the January transfer window.

The impending purchase though will raise questions over the future of Lucas Digne – who only joined the club a year ago in a £25million switch from Everton, signing a four-and-a-half-year deal, and is one of the club’s highest earners.

Moreno has not travelled to Saudi Arabia with the Betis squad for the Spanish Super Cup mini-tournament as he awaits developments on a move to the Premier League.

Aston Villa are close to completing a £12million deal for Real Betis defender Alex Moreno

Moreno is set to become Unai Emery’s first signing for Villa as he looks to strengthen his team

The arrival of Moreno could have implications for Lucas Digne’s future at Aston Villa though

Boss Unai Emery quickly identified Moreno, 29, as a priority target for this window even though he already has Lucas Digne and Ludwig Augustinsson as senior left-backs, while Ashley Young can also play there. 

Moreno turned down the chance to join Nottingham Forest last summer but the presence of his fellow Spaniard Emery at Villa could persuade him to leave Betis. If the clubs can agree a fee, personal terms are unlikely to present an obstacle.

Villa’s billionaire owners Nassef Sawiris and Wes Edens will back Emery in the winter market and last week pumped another £13.5m into the club’s coffers. 

Emery has won three and drawn one of his five league games in charge since the sacking of Steven Gerrard and alongside the interest in Moreno, he is desperate to bring in at least one wide attacker. Emery is interested in former Everton and Watford man Gerard Deulofeu, who plays for Udinese.

Aside from Moreno, Villa central defender Kortney Hause is in discussions to cancel his loan at Watford as he starts a rehabilitation programme on his knee injury. He is likely to be out for a further six weeks. 

Emery is interested in signing former Everton and Watford player Gerard Deulofeu

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