After agreeing a deal with League One side Preston North End, Aston Villa confirmed the sale of midfielder Daniel Johnson on Friday night.
Johnson, 22, was born in Jamaica but joined Villa from Crystal Palace as a 17-year-old, and went on to captain the Villa youth and reserves teams.
Despite being highly rated under Gerard Houllier, Johnson wasn't given the chance to shine under Paul Lambert at Villa Park, and was farmed out on loan to Chesterfield and Oldham Athletic this season.
With eight assists and three goals in 20 games for the two sides, Johnson was superb in League One, and with his contract set to expire this summer, Villa have sold him for an undisclosed fee to Preston.
The Lilywhites had a good relationship with Villa given that forward Callum Robinson impressed for Simon Grayson's men on loan, and now Johnson will be hoping to replicate his former team mate's success.
"I am delighted to be here," he told the Club’s official website. "I have heard from Callum Robinson that this is a good Club and a great set of lads and I can’t wait to get started now."
"When I played against the Club for Chesterfield I thought this was a really strong side and would be challenging for automatic promotion and I am delighted to be able to add my qualities to the side," Johnson added.
Whilst he was little more than an afterthought for Lambert, Villa fans were far from impressed on Twitter when the deal was completed.
Amid an argument with Jack Grealish and his refusal to use Robinson despite the club's troubles in front of goal, fans are starting to believe that Lambert has no faith in the youth system in place at Villa Park.
Some fans believe that Johnson should have been given a chance in midfield instead of Tom Cleverley, and suggest that he will go on to have a fine career with Preston.
Here are some of the reactions from Aston Villa fans after the sale of Johnson...
I cant believe that lambert's let johnson go and is now having a go at grealish, why is he so against the youth team these days? #avfc— Matt (@avfcmattb) January 24, 2015
#avfc another promising youngster Daniel Johnson leaves the Villa. Good luck to him at Preston.Youth policy dying me thinks ..— Penny R (@Penj01) January 23, 2015
Daniel Johnson gone to Preston? Another prospect gone then. Captain of reserves for years it seems & gets nowhere near 1st team #avfc— Darren Gooding (@dazzybabes) January 23, 2015
Always hoped we would see more of Daniel Johnson #avfc— AVFC Transfer Tweet (@AVFCTransTweet) January 23, 2015
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