(Reuters) – Fulham has signed full-back Ola Aina on a one-season loan from Italian Serie A team Torino, the promoted club from the Premier League announced on Friday.
Fulham also has the option of making the 23-year-old’s arrival permanent and the Nigeria international has said he is happy to return to London where he was born and raised.
“It’s amazing to be back closer to my family, back in the capital,” Aina told the club’s media channel.
“There is a good group of guys here. I am very good friends with Big Hec (Michael Hector) and Josh Onomah.
Aina, who has gone through the neighboring Chelsea youth system, has spent the last two seasons with Torino, where he has played 69 times with his versatility allowing him to play on both flanks.
“I feel very comfortable on both feet, I can fill in anywhere,” he added. “I would say I’m pretty quick and I like to attack, but I also like helping the team and doing the dirty work as much as I can.”
Aina’s signing follows the capture of midfielder Harrison Reed, goalkeeper Alphonse Areola, right-back Kenny Tete and midfielder Mario Lemina and left-back Antonee Robinson while on loan from L winger Anthony Knockaert has been made permanent.
Fulham, who was promoted to the Premier League after winning the second division league qualifiers last season, begins his campaign on Saturday with a visit from fellow Londoner Arsenal.
Report by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Toby Davis