Report: Newcastle close in on Aston Villa's Ciaran Clark after activating his £5m release clause

Ciaran Clark celebrates scoring the first goal for Aston Villa

Newcastle have reportedly activated Ciaran Clark's release clause.

Aston Villa's Ciaran ClarkAston Villa's Ciaran Clark

According to the Daily Mail, Aston Villa defender Ciaran Clark is close to joining Newcastle United after the Magpies agreed to pay his £5m release clause.

The Magpies have been active in the transfer market this summer, snapping up Matz Sels, Jesus Gamez, Grant Hanley, Isaac Hayden, Matt Ritchie and Dwight Gayle, whilst Sky Sports claim that Newcastle also activated the £4.5m release clause in Hull midfielder Mohamed Diame's contract.

Republic of Ireland's Ciaran Clark scores their first goalRepublic of Ireland's Ciaran Clark scores their first goal

That doesn't appear to be the only release clause Newcastle have activated today, as the Daily Mail report that the Magpies have also agreed to land Aston Villa defender Ciaran Clark.

Clark, 26, has been on the books at Aston Villa since the age of 11, and has been one of the top players to come up through the club's academy in recent years.

Ciaran Clark celebrates scoring the first goal for Aston VillaCiaran Clark celebrates scoring for Aston Villa

Primarily a centre back, Clark scored twice in 23 appearances for Villa last season, and whilst he was seen as a key player for Roberto Di Matteo at Villa Park, he's now heading to a Championship rival in Newcastle.

It's claimed that Newcastle have agreed to pay the £5m release clause in Clark's contract, and the Irishman is now closing in on a move to St. James' Park.

Everton's Kevin Mirallas and Aston Villa's Ciaran ClarkEverton's Kevin Mirallas and Aston Villa's Ciaran Clark

Clark featured for Ireland at this summer's European Championships in France, but scored an own goal in their 1-1 draw with Sweden.

Now, he's closing in on a move to Tyneside, and will compete with the likes of Jamaal Lascelles, Chancel Mbemba and Grant Hanley for a place in the heart of Rafael Benitez's defence this season.

Do you think Clark would be a good signing for Newcastle?

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