Aston Villa defender Ritchie De Laet has confirmed that his time with the West Midlands club will end when his contract expires this summer, report Sporza via Villa Report.
De Laet has been sent out on loan twice by the club but does insist that he holds no ill feeling towards them.
“This chapter (at Villa) is closed,” he said.
“They (loaned me out) twice, although not under this coach, but I think I am now ready for the next step in my career.
“What the next step is? If I knew more, I would say it. But I don’t really know yet. I already said that Antwerp would be beautiful. That club is close to my heart”
Anwar El Ghazi finally broke the deadlock for Dean Smith’s side just before half-time nodding home to ease the tensions in the Villa end of the national stadium.
It was 2-0 not long after the restart when John McGinn took advantage of some slack Kelle Roos goalkeeping to bundle home.
With ten minutes remaining, substitutes Jack Marriott and Martyn Waghorn conspired to drag one goal back but it was not to be for Frank Lampard’s side as Villa booked their place back in the Premier League.
This is the right move for all parties.
De Laet’s time at Villa Park has not exactly been enjoyable for him and he clearly has no future under Dean Smith so letting him leave for free is spot on.
Villa will need to strengthen however, especially in the full-back positions if they hope to establish themselves in the Premier League next season.