He became Derby’s second signing of the day, following the move for Alex Pearce, and it is a real coup for the Rams, with the 31-year-old striker an exceptional forward at Championship level.
He has penned a two-year deal, with the option for a third, having spent the second half of last season on loan at the iPro Stadium. He established himself as a key player, scoring 12 goals in 17 games, but he arrived a time when the Rams were struggling for form, and his goals were not enough to retain their play-off push.
He may have struggled during his time at Villa Park, but he proved his quality with Derby, and if he scores at the same rate as he did last season, the Rams should have no trouble putting up a strong push for promotion next term.
Despite the departure of Steve McClaren, and the arrival of Paul Clement as head coach, Bent moving on a permanent deal to Derby was never really in doubt.
Following the move, Derby and Aston Villa fans reacted on Twitter to the news, with many impressed as to the Rams signing of a proven Premier League striker.
@DerbyRetweets Good signings. Bent is a proven Premier League Striker, Pearce in the no nonsense leader we've been missing at the back.— Ash Lucas (@ash_derby) June 8, 2015
Bent and Pearce are good signings for Derby like, moving quick— Josh (@_JoshFrankland) June 8, 2015
Good Luck to Darren Bent who has just joined Derby on a 2 and a half year deal. Probably deserved better treatment from Villa #avfc— Transfers/Takeover (@avfcNextMatch) June 8, 2015
Bent to Derby on a free, very good signing.— Glenn Le Tissier (@GlennLeTiss) June 8, 2015
Darren Bent scored 21 league goals for Villa. Only started 45 league games. Cost a lot but his goals effectively kept us up for 2 seasons— Martin Laurence (@martinlaurence7) June 8, 2015
It's admirable that Darren Bent has chosen to stay at Derby permanently. Hopefully he can guide them to promotion next season. #DCFC— Liam Bekker (@BekkersBlog) June 8, 2015