Pierluigi Gollini opens up about his move to Aston Villa

Picture Supplied by Action Images

The 21-year-old Italian goalkeeper joined the club on Friday from Hellas Verona on a four-year deal.

Picture Supplied by Action Images

Aston Villa’s new Italian goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini has told the club’s official website of his delight at completing his much-anticipated move to the West Midlands.

Gollini, 21, was unveiled as Roberto Di Matteo’s second signing as Villa manager on Friday following the arrival of defender Tommy Elphick from Bournemouth last month, joining the club from Italian side Hellas Verona for a fee believed to be around £4.25 million.

The highly-rated stopper, who has signed a four-year deal at Villa Park, was allegedly being chased by several other sides over recent weeks, but he ultimately made the decision to link up with the Championship newcomers after holding positive talks with compatriot Di Matteo.

He is now excited about the opportunity to play for a team with such an illustrious history and is determined to help them bounce back to the Premier League at the first time of asking.

“I am very pleased to have joined this great club,” Gollini told avfc.co.uk. “For me this is a very big opportunity. I am really happy to be here. I just can’t wait to start, improve myself and show what I can do for this team.

“There is no doubt that Aston Villa is a very big club. Relegation can happen. Everyone can have a bad season, but I think the most important thing is how you react and how you get back.

“We will be doing our very best this season – everything we can, in fact – to get back into the Premier League because this is the division Aston Villa deserves to be in.”

Juventus' Simone Zaza scores the team's third goal past Hellas Verona's goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini

Gollini already has some experience of English football, having spent two years at Manchester United, where he was a regular for the Under-18s and Under-21s, before returning to his homeland in the summer of 2014 to join Verona.

The former Fiorentina academy standout, who earned his first cap for Italy’s Under-21s last month, went on to make 30 total appearances in his two seasons with the Italian side, featuring 26 times in Serie A last term after establishing himself as their first-choice keeper.

While he couldn’t prevent the club from suffering relegation, the Bologna native earned plenty of praise for his displays and is now widely expected to be handed Villa’s No. 1 jersey for the coming campaign over the under-fire Brad Guzan, Mark Bunn and Jed Steer.

Guzan will more than likely be shipped out this summer as a result after two hugely disappointing seasons between the posts, while it remains to be seen whether Di Matteo will opt to keep both Bunn and Steer around when he has the promising Matija Sarkic capable of stepping up into the third-choice role.

Aston Villa's Brad Guzan, Ciaran Clark and teammates look dejected after Watford's third goal

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