Derby County, Stoke City and Nuremberg are keen on securing the services of released Aston Villa midfielder Birkir Bjarnason, according to The Sunday People (September 29, page 53).

It is said that Bjarnason is waiting on events at Stoke City, where their manager Nathan Jones is under serious pressure following a disastrous start to the Championship campaign.

In August, Villa opted to part ways with their midfielder as he was released from his contract as the Midlands outfit continued their building process following promotion to England’s top-flight.

He joined the club during the 2017 January transfer window when Steve Bruce was in charge and it is fair to say that he didn’t really earn regular game time.

At times he was used out on the flanks, and towards the second half of his Villa career, Bruce and then Smith played him in a defensive-minded role in the middle of the park.

Either way, he reached the play-off finals twice with Villa and he understands what it takes to earn promotion from such a gruelling English second-tier.

Therefore, it is understandable why Derby and Stoke are seemingly keen on his services because despite their poor starts to the season, they are still pushing themselves to try and fight for those top-six places.

Bjarnason can make a difference to either team with his experience and his ability to play in various positions, so if he were to move back down to the Championship then the club in question would have more to gain in securing his signature.

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