Cape Town - Senegalese international midfielder Idrissa Gueye became last season's FA Cup finalists Aston Villa's third signing of the close season on Friday when he agreed to a move from French Ligue 1 outfit Lille.
The 25-year-old – capped 18 times and who played for Senegal at the 2012 Olympics and this year's Africa Cup of Nations – signed a four year contract for an undisclosed fee.
His arrival may be in part to offset the likely departure of club captain Fabian Delph to Manchester City, this despite the former Leeds midfielder having signed a new four-and-a-half year contract contract with Villa in January and declared then 'there was no way I'm going to bail out, this is my club'.
Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood claimed he had beaten several rivals to secure Gueye's signature.
"He's been one of the best young midfielders in France for the last few seasons. A lot of clubs were trying to sign him," said Sherwood.
"I believe we are signing a player who is hungry to succeed, is entering what should be his best years and is perfectly suited to the Premier League."
Gueye, who played 134 times for Lille since joining them in 2010, joins winger Scott Sinclair and defender Micah Richard as new signings, the latter two having arrived from Manchester City.
Sherwood will be looking to them to help Villa avoid another relegation battle – they finished only three points above the drop last term.