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1718 burnley tom heaton 01 500x500Club captain Tom Heaton has left Burnley after six years and signed for Aston Villa for an undisclosed fee today to bring to an end the speculation all summer that this deal was likely to go through.

His new manager Dean Smith said this morning: “I am delighted that Tom is joining Aston Villa. He’s done fantastically well for Burnley over the past few years and his experience and knowledge of the Premier League will be a major asset to us this season,” and there were departing words from Sean Dyche. He said: “Tom has been a terrific servant to the club, as an individual, for the team and for the fans. He was a real ambassador around the place.

“Quite simply a situation arose this summer, where he is in the final year of his contract, there was contact from Aston Villa and I believe he has been offered a very good contract for him and his family. And there is a business model at Burnley Football Club, which everyone has come to understand. It’s a very good fee for a very good player, but who is 33 with 10 months left on a contract, which has to be balanced up. For me, more on the personal side, Tom is a fantastic bloke, a fantastic player and my first ever signing at Burnley Football Club. Without a shadow of doubt, for many, many years to come, I’m sure he’ll be remembered very fondly, not just on the pitch, but off the pitch as well as a top professional and a top person.”

There will be more on Tom Heaton later today, looking at his six years at Burnley, but for now, I and Up the Clarets wish him all the very best at Aston Villa.

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