Benteke joins Villa

Striker pens four-year deal at Bodymoor Heath

Christian Benteke: Joins Villa for £7million on a four-year deal

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Belgium international striker Christian Benteke has joined Aston Villa from Genk on a four-year deal.

The West Midlands club finally agreed a £7million deal for the 21-year-old attacker.

It comes after Genk had previously rejected two bids from Villa for the Congolese-Belgian player.

Benteke - who has netted three times in five games this season after being on target 18 times last season - was determined to join Paul Lambert's side.

Dream

And he told Sky Sports News: "Yes, I'm still young, but I have realised my dream which was to come here and I'm very happy."

Benteke will join a long list of Belgium internationals currently plying their trade in the Premier League.

But the player, who opened his account for Belgium in their impressive 4-2 win over Holland earlier this month in what was his fifth cap, is not overawed by the challenge ahead.

"I hope to be a success and I'm motivated to do well," said Benteke.

"The deal was difficult, but now I'm a player for Aston Villa and I would like to say thank you to my manager and to everyone. I will go forward for a new challenge.

"I don't know (how many goal) I will get for Villa, but I will do my best.

"The Premier League is the best in the world and it's a dream for me to come here."

Dimension

Meanwhile, Villa boss Lambert was glad to have finally completed the deal.

"Christian is only 21 years of age but already he's an established Belgian international and he's had a terrific time at Genk," he said.

"He's something very different to what we have here and that added dimension will enhance the football club.

"A young lad he may be, but he's definitely a handful. He's tall, powerful, he has pace and we'll be stronger with him in the side.

"We're stronger now as a unit and we're trying to build step by step. This is an important step. I believe in the players I have here that they can go and perform."

The Benteke deal takes the number of summer signings by Villa to eight.

Crewe skipper Ashley Westwood joined the club on a four-year deal from Crewe Alexandra while Chesterfield striker Jordan Bowery joined earlier in the day for an undisclosed fee on a three-year contract.

Defenders Ron Vlaar, Joe Bennett and Matt Lowton and midfield duo Brett Holman and Karim El Ahmadi had previously linked up with Villa.