Full-back Alex Moreno confirmed as Aston Villa's first January signing; the 29-year-old has played in all but one of Real Betis' LaLiga matches so far this season and will provide competition for Lucas Digne; Unai Emery is also targeting a winger
Wednesday 11 January 2023 16:56, UK
Left-back Alex Moreno has been confirmed as Aston Villa's first signing of the January window after the club agreed a £13.3m deal with Real Betis.
The 29-year-old Spaniard, whose move is subject to international clearance and a visa application, becomes the first recruit under head coach Unai Emery, who took charge in October 2022 following the departure of Steven Gerrard.
Moreno had started 14 out of Betis' 15 LaLiga games this season and has made 122 appearances for the club since joining from Rayo Vallecano in 2019.
Aston Villa boss Unai Emery told the club's official website: "Alex is a good player that can help our squad.
"He has been one of the top left-backs in LaLiga over the past few seasons and we are delighted to have him here."
Moreno, who will wear the number five shirt, can operate on the left side of midfield and also adds competition for Lucas Digne, who only arrived from Everton for £25m last year.
Villa are currently 11th in the Premier League and were knocked out of the FA Cup on on Sunday by League Two side Stevenage.
Unai Emery insists any new signings must bring something unique to the team and wants to add a winger in the January transfer window.
Emery has also dismissed suggestions he will allow Danny Ings to leave this month, although Cameron Archer has joined Middlesbrough on loan.
He has been linked with a move for Udinese's Gerard Deulofeu, who he worked with at Sevilla, and wants different attributes from new arrivals.
"We need a winger, a specific winger, we need it and we are trying to find one," said Emery last week.
"We are trying to add some different characteristics of the players to introduce into the squad. We now have two strikers in Ollie Watkins and Danny Ings who are specifically strikers.
"If we will add someone they will be different as a characteristic, as a player, but with Cameron, it is difficult to play here with the players we have now.
"We are thinking of adding one more into the squad."
Who will be on the move this winter? The January transfer window opened on Sunday January 1, 2023 and closes at 11pm on Tuesday January 31, 2023.
Keep up-to-date with all the latest transfer news and rumours in our dedicated Transfer Centre blog on Sky Sports' digital platforms. You can also catch up with the ins, outs and analysis on Sky Sports News.