Birmingham Live: Aston Villa have announced the signing of Bournemouth whizz-kid Ajani Burchall for a “substantial compensation fee”.
Burchall, a winger, made his Championship debut just 37 days after turning 16 in the 5-0 rout over Huddersfield at the Vitality Stadium.
A statement on the Cherries website read: “AFC Bournemouth will receive a substantial undisclosed compensation fee after teenager Ajani Burchall completed a move to Aston Villa.
“The 16-year-old became the third youngest player to turn out for AFC Bournemouth when appeared in a league match last season.”
BirminghamLive understands that Aston Villa beat a host of clubs to the Bermudian’s signature, with Arsenal touted with an interest earlier this year.
Burchall, who turns 17 in November, will initially link up with Villa’s under-18s before being fast-tracked to the under-23s to join the likes of Louie Barry, Aaron Ramsey and others.
Elsewhere, Villa are expected to announce the signing of 18-year-old midfielder Tim Iroegbunam in the coming days. The teenager, from Great Barr, was West Brom’s academy player of the season last year with Villa tying up a compensation package with their near-neighbours.
Villa, meanwhile, have announced nine new scholars who have all signed terms with the club, including the capture of England under-16 captain Josh Feeney from Fleetwood Town.
Homegrown youngsters Todd Alcock, Mikell Barnes, Charlie Lutz and Kobei Moore have all penned contracts, as has midfielder Kyrie Pierre, who Villa signed from Bristol Rovers earlier this summer.
“Pierre is a creative attacking midfielder with excellent technical ability, movement and an eye for goal. He has settled in well since arriving in May,” a spokesman for Villa said.
Villa have also announced another pre-season friendly to their schedule with Dean Smith’s first-team heading to Bristol City on Saturday, July 31 for a 1pm kick-off. Ticket details will be announced in due course.
Villa’s pre-season fixture list: Walsall away (July 21, 7.30pm); Stoke City away (July 24, 3pm); Nottingham Forest at Bodymoor Heath (July 28, 1pm); Bristol City away (July 31, 1pm); Sevilla at Villa Park (August 7, 3pm).