New arrival at Watford of England, William Troost-Ekong has left a comforting message behind at Udinese of Italy, as he finally sealed a summer transfer to The Hornets, with which he will now compete this season in the lower cadre English Championship, megasportsarena.com reports.
“Udinese Calcio announce the permanent sale of Williams Troost-Ekong to Watford FC,” the statement announcing the transfer of the 27-year-old defender, who played 66 games for La Bianconeri, when he moved to Udine in August 2018 at a fee of €3.3m.
Troost-Ekong makes the move to Vicarage Road in a five-year contract, before which the centre back put together an emotional good-bye message, in which he confirmed his departure from the Italian Serie A club, but added that he is not leaving under a cloud of rancor.
Many stories earlier highlighted apparent discontent by the top brass at Udinese, who raised allegations that Watford approached Troost-Ekong unofficially, despite both clubs being under the same ownership, but the Holland-born star insists he has nothing but gratitude for the time he spent at Stadio Friuli.
Dramatically, even before Udinese come out with a formal announcement of a deal with the English Championship club, the 27-year-old former Tottenham Hotspur of England youth team player, who has also starred for Haugesund of Norway, Werder Bremen of Germany, KAA Gent of Belgium and Bursaspor of Turkey, took to social media to say good-bye to Udinese’s fans.
It formally marks the end of just two seasons he spent with The Little Zebras, which he joined in the 2018/19 season, but the Super Eagles’ assistant captain, who had earlier on played in the nation of his birth with Groningen and FC Dordrecht as well as Haugesund of Denmark, insists he has no ill-feelings against Udinese, with which he made 66 appearances across all competitions.
During his couple of seasons with the Udine-based side, Troost-Ekong helped the team avoid the drop twice, by finishing 12th and 13th, with 43 and 45 points respectively, but a report late last week by Watford Observer disclosed that he was heading for Vicarage Road under a storm.
That story appeared to gather flesh when Troost-Ekong was an unused substitute in Udinese’s season opener at Hellas Verona on Sunday, which they lost 1-0, but he has doused all malice, as he seeks better trappings at the club where Odion Jude Ighalo and Uche Agbo once held sway, while Isaac Success appears on his way out, but Tom Dele-Bashiru is finally finding his range.
Troost-Ekong said in a video post on social media: “Just a few words to thank everyone. After two special years, the time has come to change and leave. Special thanks to all my friends and teammates, the staff, the club and of course our fans. Thanks a lot to everyone and good luck to Udinese. Forza Udinese always. A big hug. Your Willy.”