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Aston Villa in shock swoop for Birmingham City ace Jota

By Matt Maher | Aston Villa | Published:

Villa are closing in on a shock swoop for Blues winger Jota.

Jota in action against Wolves last season.

The 27-year-old was undergoing a medical on Friday, ahead of a move which would see midfielder Gary Gardner move in the other direction in a permanent switch.

Jota would become Villa’s first signing since winning promotion to the Premier League and the first player to join directly from their Second City rivals since Alan Curbishley in 1983.

The Spaniard is well known to Dean Smith, having previously played under the Villa boss at Brentford.

He joined Blues in a £6million deal two years ago and has scored eight goals in 75 games.

Gardner, a product of Villa’s academy, spent last season on loan at St Andrew’s and is not part of Smith’s future plans.

It is believed the deal will also see Villa pay Blues a fee of around £4million, though the precise figure has yet to be agreed.

Villa are wasting no time putting in place plans for their return to the top flight, following a three-year absence.

Alan Hutton, the club’s longest-serving current player, has become the latest player to confirm he will be leaving this summer.

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The Scot, signed by Alex McLeish in 2011, will not be offered a new deal and posted a message on Instagram claiming the club will “forever be in his heart”.

Albert Adomah, Tommy Elphick and Mile Jedinak are also poised to leave when their deals expire at the end of next month.

Matt Maher

By Matt Maher

Chief sports writer for the Express & Star.

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