Transfer news: Chris Wood to Newcastle, Aston Villa sign Digne

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Both Newcastle United and Aston Villa were active in the transfer window on Thursday with Newcastle United signing New Zealand international striker Chris Wood from Burnley, while Aston Villa completed a move for Everton's former FC Barcelona left back Lucas Digne.

Newcastle paid 25 million pounds (34.3 million US dollars) for Wood to add weight to an attack that has struggled to score goals all season and which will be missing top scorer Callum Wilson for around two months with a muscle injury.

"I have played at St. James' Park a few times and it's an amazing place, so to have the chance to represent this club with those incredible supporters behind me and my teammates is very special," said Wood on the Newcastle website.

He is the second signing Newcastle has made this month in the wake of their Saudi Arabian backed takeover and follows England international right back Kieran Trippier into the club.

The signing also has the effect of weaking Burnley, who is one of Newcastle's main rivals in the struggle to avoid relegation this season. He is likely to make his debut in this weekend's relegation clash with Watford.

Aston Villa has agreed a similar fee with Everton, who is also their second signing of the month after Philippe Coutinho, who arrived on loan from FC Barcelona last week.

Philippe Coutinho has completed his loan deal to Aston Villa from Barcelona until the end of the season.

Digne told Everton he wanted to leave a month ago after falling out with Everton coach Rafael Benitez.

"Everything must come to an end. I just did not expect it to end this way. What has happened and some things that was said about me in the last month has made me very sad," he wrote on social media on Thursday.

Aston Villa boss Steven Gerrard meanwhile was delighted at the arrival of a defender who has played for France as well as Barca and Paris Saint Germain.

"When Lucas became available we jumped at the opportunity to bring him to the club. To sign a player of his pedigree and quality in the January window is a great addition to our squad and his arrival excites me and everyone associated with Aston Villa," he said on the club website. 

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