Villarreal sign Cote d’Ivoire captain

Villarreal have signed former Tottenham and Paris Saint-Germain defender Serge Aurier on a free transfer, the Spanish club announced on Monday night.

Aurier has joined the side until the end of the season, with club and player having the option to extend the agreement for a further two years.

The 28-year-old was a free agent after his contract at Tottenham was terminated in August.

He previously played under Villarreal coach Unai Emery at PSG, where they spent the 2016-17 season together.

In a club statement, Villarreal described Aurier as “a defender who is great physically. He stands out for his power, speed, strength and ability to join the attack. He is a versatile player who tends to play at right-back, but he can also play in the middle of defence.”

The Cote d’Ivoire skipper has been called up for two World Cup qualifiers against Malawi, with Villarreal saying he will join up with his new club after the international window.

Aurier made 77 league appearances for Tottenham but fell out of favour under Mauricio Pochettino and then Jose Mourinho after a number of error-strewn performances.

Emery’s side are bottom of Group F in the Champions League after drawing at home to Atalanta and losing at Manchester United. – AFP

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