Alex McLeish delighted with Charles N'Zogbia capture

Alex McLeish confirmed today Aston Villa are edging closer to completing the capture of Charles N'Zogbia from Wigan and hopes his arrival can help compensate for the loss of Ashley Young and Stewart Downing.

The deal, thought to be in the region of £9.5m, will be completed once N'Zogbia undergoes a medical and McLeish is delighted to land a player he tried in vain to sign last season when Birmingham City manager.

The 25-year-old Frenchman will help fill the hole left by the sales of England duo Young and Downing to Manchester United and Liverpool respectively.

"The deal hasn't been fully done yet, he still has to complete a medical. I believe everything else is just about there," said McLeish during an Asia Trophy press conference in Hong Kong.

"I think it's a great addition to the squad. He's an explosive player and he gives us a little bit of quality to replace one or two of the guys that have left the club.

"We try to do as much homework as possible to ensure we can get it done. You can never say it's a 100 % done deal, that's why I remain cautious, but I'm pretty confident.

"You saw his exploits last season, especially towards the end of the campaign when he scored five or six goals which were extremely important for Wigan to stay in the league.

"I felt we needed to replace Downing with similar quality, he's broken into the French national team, I believe we've got a player who can become even better."

Villa skipper Stiliyan Petrov was equally enthusiastic about N'Zogbia's impending arrival.

"He's an exceptional talent, he would be an amazing signing for us," he added.

"He's improved so much in the last couple of years and we'll be glad to have him in our team because he can bring something special.

"He's a very explosive player, he likes to take people on and when you have a player like that, you take a lot of pressure off the team.

"Every time he's faced us, he's torn us apart, he'll be an exciting signing."

McLeish has still to decide who will be his captain for the 2011-2012 campaign.

Petrov has worn the armband since Gareth Barry quit Villa for Manchester City two years ago.

But last season the Bulgarian international was unable to hold onto a regular spot and the since departed Ashley Young and Nigel Reo-Coker also skippered the side.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones
Theme parks continue to draw in thrill-seekers despite the risks - so why are we so addicted?

Why are we addicted to theme parks?

Now that Banksy has unveiled his own dystopian version, Christopher Beanland considers the ups and downs of our endless quest for amusement
Tourism in Iran: The country will soon be opening up again after years of isolation

Iran is opening up again to tourists

After years of isolation, Iran is reopening its embassies abroad. Soon, there'll be the chance for the adventurous to holiday there
10 best PS4 games

10 best PS4 games

Can’t wait for the new round of blockbusters due out this autumn? We played through last year’s offering
Transfer window: Ten things we learnt

Ten things we learnt from the transfer window

Record-breaking spending shows FFP restraint no longer applies
Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent