Norwich City have completed the season-long loan signing of Spanish defender Xavi Quintilla from Villarreal.
City will also retain an option to make the deal for the 23-year-old full-back permanent throughout the course of the 2020-21 season.
Quintilla, 23, typically operates as a left-back but is capable of being deployed at centre-back as well.
After beginning his youth career at Lleida in Spain, Quintilla joined Barcelona’s famed La Masia academy in 2009, eventually making his first appearance for their reserve team in 2015.
A return to Lleida came during the 2016-17 season, when Quintilla was loaned to Lleida Esportiu, before making the permanent switch to Villarreal B in 2017.
Over the last three seasons, Quintilla has made 52 appearances in all competitions for Villarreal B and 32 in all competitions for the club’s first team, 26 of which came in La Liga and one in the Europa League.
Quintilla has also represented the Spanish national team at youth level in the Under-16s to Under-19s categories.
Speaking exclusively to canaries.co.uk, Quintilla said: “I’m so happy and proud to be here and to play for Norwich in England and in the Championship.
“My philosophy and my football is similar to Norwich’s. I played before for Villarreal and Barcelona’s academy, and I think Norwich works a bit like them, so it’s great for me.
“I come here to play as many minutes as possible. We want to play good football for the fans to see. I would love to play in the Premier League, so I will do everything possible to get Norwich into the top league.”
Norwich City head coach Daniel Farke added: “Xavi is a player we’ve been following and tracking for some time.
“I’m happy it has been possible to sign him at this stage, because he is a young player with experience at the top level. He has played nearly 30 games in La Liga for Villarreal and also has experience in European competitions.
“He’s a humble person who wants to develop his game. As a player, he has good technical and tactical skills and is very good in possession of the ball.
“We had a situation last season where we were a little short in the full-back areas, so we’ve now been able to add competition and options in those areas.”
The deal has been completed subject to international clearance.