Mbwana Samatta: Aston Villa 'very close' to signing striker, says Dean Smith

Dean Smith: "We're getting very close. I think the paperwork is just being ticked off with Samatta"

Mbwana Samatta has scored 43 goals in 98 appearances in the Belgian First Division A for Genk
Image: Mbwana Samatta is closing in on a move to the Premier League

Dean Smith has revealed a deal for Aston Villa to sign Genk striker Mbwana Samatta is "very close".

Villa have made signing Samatta, who has scored 43 goals in 98 league appearances for Genk, a priority following the injury to striker Wesley who has been ruled out for the rest of the season.

Speaking after Saturday's 1-1 Premier League draw at Brighton, the Villa boss said: "We're getting very close. I think the paperwork is just being ticked off with Samatta.

"If we can get that done, we'll be really pleased because he's a good player and on top of that, he's a really good character as well."

Islam Slimani
Image: Leicester striker Islam Slimani is wanted by Aston Villa

Samatta is due to undergo a medical in Birmingham over the weekend, while Villa's bosses process the necessary paperwork to apply for a work permit.

Sky Sports News first reported that Villa wanted to sign the 27-year-old Tanzania international in July of last summer.

Brighton, Watford and Turkish side Galatasaray have all looked at Samatta, who is believed to have a £10.5m release clause in his Genk contract.

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Dean Smith says Villa are working hard to sign a couple of strikers this January, with Keinan Davis and Wesley both injured

Villa are also interested in signing Leicester striker Islam Slimani, who is currently on a season-long loan with Monaco.

A loan deal for Slimani deal is more complicated from Villa's perspective, because the club would need agreement from both Monaco and Leicester for a new loan deal to be sanctioned.

How to follow the January transfer window with Sky Sports

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Start your day with Good Morning Transfers at 9am as our team of reporters bring you the latest news and insight. Transfer Talk then follows at midday delivering analysis of the biggest stories. Then join us at 7pm for the definitive round-up of the day's news with The Transfer Show.

Meanwhile, the Transfer Talk podcast will also be back at the turn of the year with more expert analysis from here and across the continent.

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