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Benteke signs new deal; Marquinhos nears €35m PSG move

Aston Villa striker Christian Benteke has put pen to paper on a new four-year deal worth £60,000-a-week at Villa Park.

Aston Villa striker Christian Benteke has put pen to paper on a new four-year deal worth £60,000-a-week at Villa Park after withdrawing his transfer request, BBC Sport understands.

Benteke, who joined Villa from Jupiler Pro League side K.R.C. Genk for £7 million last summer, bagged 23 goals and eight assists in 39 appearances in all competitions for AVFC in 2012/13.

Earlier this month, the Belgium international, 22, handed in a transfer request amid reported interest from Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur.

The 22-year-old has withdrawn his request and signed a new deal after re-evaluating his long-term future at the club.

“I spoke with the manager when I returned to training and we had a good talk,” said Benteke.

“I am very happy to be back here in Birmingham and at Aston Villa, and to sign a new contract.

“This is a great club and it has given me a lot. Now I have to give back to my team-mates and the fans who have always been right behind me.”

Villa have been quite busy this summer, adding six players — Aleksandar Tonev, Antonio Luna, Jed Steer, Jores Okore, Leandro Bacuna and Nicklas Helenius — and agreeing new deals with the likes of Andi Weimann, Ashley Westwood, Brad Guzan, Ciaran Clark, Matthew Lowton and Nathan Baker.

Marquinhos nears €35m PSG move

A.S. Roma defender Marquinhos is on the verge of completing a €35 million move to French champions Paris Saint-Germain, according to ESPN FC.

Marquinhos, 19, joined Roma from Brasileirão side Corinthians for a fee believed to be less than €5 million.

The Brazil youth international, who made 30 competitive appearances in his only season at the Stadio Olimpico, had more last man tackles (10) than any other player in Europe’s top five leagues last term, per WhoScored.com.

The highly-rated 19-year-old defender is expected to sign a five-year deal at the Parc des Princes, where he will form a formidable Brazilian centre-back partnership with compatriot Thiago Silva next season, in the coming hours.

“I’ll never forget my time in Rome,” said Marquinhos via Twitter. “It was delightful and I will always carry it in my heart. Thanks to all of the fans, the club and my team mates. Roma forever!”

A number of top European clubs, including Barcelona, Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United, were reportedly interested in Marquinhos, with Barcelona and United having submitted official bids for the 19-year-old ace, according to the player’s agent Roberto Calenda.

However, the Giallorossi could not turn down Les Parisiens’ sensational €35 million offer for Marquinhos, and understandably so.

Fri 19 July, 2013
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