Swansea defender Ashley Williams has completed his £12million switch to Premier League rivals Everton.
The Toffees have moved swiftly to replace John Stones, who was sold for £47.5million to Manchester City on Tuesday, by acquiring Williams, 31, for a fraction of the cost on a three-year deal.
Williams had spent eight years with the Swans and though they rejected Everton’s initial advances for him, the Welshman’s desire to move to Merseyside saw the South Wales outfit relent.
Having risen through the leagues with them, chairman Huw Jenkins expressed his regret that Williams had sought pastures new.
“We are disappointed to lose Ashley. It is definitely not something we wanted to happen,” Jenkins said on Swansea’s official website.
“But having turned down Everton’s initial offer, Ashley expressed his desire for a new challenge at this time of his career.
“Taking into account the excellent service Ashley has given this football club over the last eight years, including as club captain, we reluctantly agreed to his request to join Everton after they made an improved offer.
“It goes without saying that we wish him the very best with his new challenge and thank him for his services.”