West Ham United have confirmed their third signing of the summer, as Villarreal midfielder Pablo Fornals arrives on a five-year deal.
The 23-year-old's future had been up in the air after another impressive season in La Liga, in which he featured 50 times for the Spanish side. Arsenal were among the clubs previously mentioned in connection to a move, but he will move to the London Stadium for a fee believed to be in the region of £24m.
“I’m very happy to be part of West Ham,” he told the club's website. “I feel very good, very happy and very grateful for the opportunity that has been provided to me.
“I want the club to continue betting on young and ambitious people, people who want to do well for the long term.
“I know about the loyal fans and the stadium, which is a beautiful stadium. The fans fill the stadium every weekend and that is something admirable, especially with the passion with which football is lived there. I think it is important to play with the support of your fans at home.
“I have worked with Mario [Husillos, West Ham director of football] before – I know him from when I was in Malaga. With Manuel [Pellegrini], only when I saw him and admired him on TV. Of course, Manuel was a big influence because in the end he is one of the best coaches in the world and who doesn’t want to work with people like that?"
Fornals is contracted to West Ham until 2024, with the club maintaining the option to extend that by a further year.