Writer: Mike Field
Date:Friday August 8 2014
Following on from the recent speculation, Aston Villa have tonight confirmed the four year signing of Aly Cissokho.
The 26 year old left back joined us from La Liga side Valencia and we are just awaiting his international clearance. He spent last season on loan with Liverpool, making 19 appearances for them as they finished 2nd in the Premier League and speaking to the Official Site he felt he was destined to play for Villa at some point in his career after falling in love with Villa Park during his debut in the Premiership.
'Destiny has made it so that Villa Park was where I played my first game and now one year later I am wearing the shirt. I remember everything about the game because it was my first here in England - the pitch, the stadium, the fans, everything was incredible.'
Cissokho goes on to say that one of the things that amazed him was even though Liverpool won the match one nil, the atmosphere created by the fans on the day really impressed him.
Of course he comes with good experience having played in a number of different countries and sides, and hopefully it won't take him too long to settle and it can be the case of fourth time lucky for our left back slot.
Speaking himself as the deal was officially announced, manager Paul Lambert said of the capture.
'Aly will bring a lot of experience with the clubs he's been at and the experience he already has of playing the Premier League with Liverpool. This will stand him in good stead and stand us in good stead as well. He has big game experience, he's not a novice. You can see that with the clubs he's been at and the way he is as a lad. He comes across really well. He's somebody I think will be an asset. He's big, strong and powerful and he had a good taste at Liverpool.'
Lambert says that he's hopeful of bringing in at least two more as well to improve the overall group before the season kicks off, and then he feels we'll be really set for him to actually have an impressive fist of things at the club having made the mistakes he has done with the experience and balance issue (my words not his!) because of course we also have Christian Benteke, Libor Kozak and Joe Cole to come back from injury, so when you do look at the team now whatever it may prove to count for, we do have a better balance between the experienced and inexperienced, and having that know how on the pitch can only help the younger lads develop properly rather than being thrown in the way some of them were.
With proper support like it seems we have now, maybe even a few of those can shine and grow in confidence again and start to look like the players we thought they would be coming through the rank instead of their confidence being shot by being hung out to dry irrespective of form.
I must admit I don't know much of Cissokho as I don't remember him standing out in highlights I saw for Liverpool but that's hardly surprising :-) I don't remember him making a clanger of it though, so it sounds like a good addition and a strong addition to the backline especially given the teams he's played for and their levels.
Hopefully we can now chalk off left back and see some real progress, as irrespective of where people stand on Lambert (I don't mean literally on him) there's no way he'd have wanted the last two seasons to have gone how they did especially given his young and hungry policy - now we do have the balance to that, let's hope we all benefit and whilst the owner continues to work out his interest level now, maybe we can all get the time under Lambert we thought we would when he first moved to us.
The fee is undisclosed, but rumoured to be in the region of £2million.
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Date:Friday August 8 2014
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