Ricky Zililo, Senior Sports Reporter
ZIMBABWE international Marvelous Nakamba is ready to stamp his authority and illuminate the English Premier League after penning a five-year deal with Aston Villa on Wednesday night.
Nakamba, who has been ‘secretly’ training with the Birmingham-based side while waiting for Villa and Belgium giants Club Brugge to agree on a transfer fee, was unveiled by the club yesterday.
The central midfielder, who becomes the third player after Peter Ndlovu and Benjani Mwaruwari to ply their trade in the EPL, is elated with his move to Villa Park and will be travelling with the rest of the team to Germany for a friendly match.
“I’ve just signed a five-year deal and I’m happy. I thank God for His blessings. Playing in the EPL is a dream come true and I have to continue training hard to scale more heights. I’ve waited for long to play at this stage and I’m grateful to Villa who gave me a big contract, something that shows they value me and now I have to repay their faith in me by doing my best to help the club achieve its desired goals,” said Nakamba.
Nakamba (26) has previously played in France for AS Nancy and Vitesse of Netherlands, said he was not worried about the delay in concluding negotiations to join Villa.
“Never was I bothered by what was happening behind the scenes because I knew that everyone involved in this deal wanted the best for all the parties. I was never bothered at all and kept myself busy training hard.
“Even reports that tainted me as a ‘bad-boy’ didn’t bother me. You know what, I’m just a boy from the ghetto who was only chasing after his dream. A lesson for up-and-coming stars is that fight for what you believe in, but do so in a proper way,” Nakamba said.
The former Highlanders juniors and Bantu Rovers player declined to comment on details of his transfer fees.
Media reports say Club Brugge and Villa agreed on a £11 million transfer fee. There are reports that that Nakamba will pocket £55 000 a week, making him Zimbabwe’s best paid athlete.
Villa head coach Dean Smith told the British media that Nakamba fits well in his squad.
“Marvelous fits the criteria of the type of player we were looking for. He’s very mobile, he’s very good in possession, and he will fit in with our style of play,” Smith told Sky Sports.
Nakamba became Villa’s second signing of the summer from Club Brugge after Brazilian striker Wesley Moraes arrived at Villa Park in a deal worth in excess of £20 million.
Ashley Preece, a reporter based in Birmingham, tweeted “strong, dominant, left-footed and loves a midfield battle: more insight into Marvelous Nakamba, the warrior from Zimbabwe”. — @ZililoR