In another sign of Villa’s attempts to change the narrative around our under-productive academy, Dutch youth international Sil Swinkels has made the switch to Villa Park from Vitesse Arnhem.
The promising defender, still 16, joins a number of fresh faces who have signed professional terms at the club in recent weeks.
The deal, which was widely rumoured to be on the cards since late July, was today confirmed via Vitesse Arnhem’s official Twitter account.
Whilst Swinkels is obviously one for the future, it underline’s the drive to move away from Bodymoor Heath developing promising players who simply do not go on to make the grade either at Aston Villa or elsewhere for a sizeable fee. The proof of this came in June as a host of lauded players found themselves released.
Villa’s CEO Christian Purslow has been cut-throat in his comments regarding players who had failed to break into the first team, stating that those aged 21+ weren’t good enough and as a consequence that the club’s academy model had failed.
Swinkels, a Holland Under-16 international, is the first player from Vitesse Arnhem’s academy to join a foreign side.
In an interesting quirk of modern player contracts, Swinkels will only cost Villa only a ‘training fee‘.
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