Aston Villa transfer agreement reached as player returns to club

Latest Aston Villa transfer news as one player is set to depart and two return.
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Aston Villa have reportedly struck a transfer agreement with Middlesbrough for the sale of Finn Azaz.

The 23-year-old came through the academy system at West Brom but joined Villa in 2021, and could leave Villa Park having never made a senior competitive appearance. Azaz during his time as a Villa player has had successful loan spells at Newport County and Plymouth Argyle.

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He returned to the Pilgrims for a second loan having been a key figure in the 2022/23 League One title winning squad, and has been a regular once again in their team. His seven goals and five assists in 26 league games has caught the attention of two of the Championship's biggest hitters and now his time at both Home Park and Villa could be up.

A report from Football Insider claims that Middlesbrough have agreed a fee of £2m, and a move could happen shortly. Elsewhere, The Athletic believe it is slightly higher at £2.5m. Boro - managed by Michael Carrick - have seemingly beaten Southampton in the race to sign the highly rated midfielder.

Azaz will now discuss personal terms ahead of a possible move to the Riverside Stadium. If all goes to plan, his debut for his new club could be against Villa. Aston Villa travel to the Riverside Stadium in the third round of the FA Cup on Saturday, January 6.

In other news, Chisom Afoka has returned to Villa from his loan at Bradford City. The 20-year-old was meant to be at Valley Parade for the entirety of the season but his loan has been cut short by the Bantams.

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He made five appearances in total for the League Two outfit with two starts in the EFL Trophy and one start in the league. He hadn't made a match-day squad for Bradford since Halloween.

A club statement from Bradford City read: "Bradford City AFC would like to take this opportunity to thank Chisom for his efforts in claret and amber, and wish him the best for the future."

Elsewhere, Lamare Bogarde is to have his loan cut short at Bristol Rovers. The Netherlands under-20's midfielder is to be recalled according to Bristol World, and a move to a Championship club now seems likely.

Bogarde has made 18 appearances for the League One outfit this season but since the sacking of Joey Barton, he has found first-team opportunities limited. The 19-year-old was one of a series of young players who performed well with the first-team in pre-season.

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