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Transfer Buzz: Liverpool sign striker Benteke from Villa

July 23, 2015 10:48 IST
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Christian Benteke

Christian Benteke’s bullish qualities are likely to add an extra dimension to a Liverpool frontline. Photograph: Facebook

Liverpool wrapped up a deal for Christian Benteke on Wednesday, luring the targetman to Anfield on a long-term contract having finally struck a deal to prise the Belgian powerhouse away from Aston Villa.

"The 24-year-old put pen to paper on a long-term contract with the Reds today after successfully completing a medical in London," Liverpool said on their website, bringing to a close several weeks of negotiations between the clubs.

British media reported last week that the Merseysiders had finally agreed to meet a 32.5 million pounds ($50.75 million) release clause in the striker's contract, having previously sought and failed to persuade the Midlands club to reduce their asking price.

Benteke becomes Liverpool's seventh close-season signing and represents the latest effort by manager Brendan Rodgers to recruit some frontline firepower after last season's struggles in front of goal.

The forward joins Brazil international Roberto Firmino, fellow Belgian Divock Origi and England Under-21 striker Danny Ings, who have all been brought to Anfield with the intention of reinvigorating Liverpool's attack.

Benteke's bullish qualities are likely to add an extra dimension to a Liverpool frontline who looked lightweight last season, finding the net just 52 times in the Premier League after plundering 101 in the previous campaign.

Having helped Villa avoid relegation last season, he hopes to have different objectives at his new club.

Born in Kinshasa, Zaire, he joined Villa from Belgian club Genk in 2012 and swiftly adapted to life in the Premier League.

He played 100 games for Villa in three seasons, scoring 49 goals and was top scorer last season with 15, including 12 in as many games towards the end of the campaign.

Atletico sign Ghana midfielder Mensah from Vitoria

Atletico Madrid have agreed to sign Ghana midfielder Bernard Mensah from Portuguese side Vitoria Guimaraes and will send him on loan for one season to La Liga rivals and city neighbours Getafe.

"The Ghanaian player has signed with our club for six seasons," Atletico said on their website on Wednesday. "He will play the first of those on loan with Getafe," they added.

Vitoria and Getafe also confirmed the deal for the 20-year-old, who operates as an attacking midfielder and can also play wide on the left.

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