Southampton have announced that Matt Targett has agreed a permanent move to Aston Villa for an undisclosed fee.


Targett is a graduate from the Southampton academy, breaking into the first team in 2014 and going on to make 63 appearances for the club, sandwiched in between a loan spell at Fulham in the back half of the 2017/18 season. 

The club confirmed the news with an official statement on their website, writing: "Southampton Football Club can confirm that Matt Targett has agreed a permanent transfer to Aston Villa for an undisclosed fee.


"The defender’s departure ends a 15-year association with his boyhood club, having joined the Academy at the age of eight. Now 23, Targett made a total of 63 appearances for Saints across five years in the first team, making his debut in a Capital One Cup tie at Millwall in August 2014.


"His only goal for the club, scored in the 3-3 draw with Bournemouth at St Mary’s in April, effectively clinched Premier League survival last season.


"Targett has been an outstanding ambassador for the Academy, setting a fine example for future Staplewood graduates. Everyone at Southampton Football Club would like to thank Matt for his tremendous service and wish him every success in the future."


​Villa announced the news with a not-so-cryptic post on Twitter which contained merely an image of a target alongside a caption containing the eyes emoji.  

They later confirmed the transfer with the hashtag #TargettAcquired, declaring in an official statement of their own: "Aston Villa is delighted to announce the signing of Matt Targett from Southampton for an undisclosed fee.


Head Coach Dean Smith was quick to praise the acquisition, declaring: "We're very pleased to have Matt join us. He's a player we have been looking at for a considerable amount of time.


"He fits our criteria of being a young player with experience of playing in the Premier League and having the potential to develop further. He will help make us a stronger defensive unit and we are all looking forward to working with him."