The Christian Benteke saga is over -- and it ends with a happy outcome for Aston Villa. The Belgian striker, instrumental in avoiding a first-ever relegation from the Premier League for the Midlands side last season, had handed in a transfer request in the hopes that another team would be willing to substantially improve upon his wages.
But with nobody meeting Villa's £30 million valuation, the centre forward, who had been left out of the club's preseason tour, has now opted to sign an improved contract, shortly after returning to the squad on Thursday. With Benteke's immediate future secured, Villa fans can breathe a sigh of relief -- they're not going to suffer what could have been a crippling blow in the transfer market, and can continue adding to a young squad that's full of potential.
This isn't the end of the Benteke saga, of course. Unless Paul Lambert's side can quickly reestablish themselves at the top of the table, one would have to imagine that we'll see a repeat of Benteke being linked to a move away every summer, especially if he keeps playing at his current level. But for now, he's a Villan, and all is forgiven between him and the fans.