Free agent Birkir Bjarnason has shown he is ready to earn a deal at Derby County following his impressive performance for Iceland in their recent defeat to France.
The Sun on Sunday (September 29; Page 53) claim Derby and Stoke City want Bjarnason.
The 81-capped Icelandic midfielder is a free agent after leaving Aston Villa in the summer.
And Bjarnason recently told reporters in Iceland that Derby and Stoke have been in contact over signing him, but a deal has yet to materialise. He said, quoted by Foltbolti.net.
Yes, yes, they [Derby and Stoke] have been talking, but there is nothing that has been finished. I’ve been talking to a team for a long time and it happens when it happens. I’m not in a hurry. I’m open to everything and take the position after the games. Then I’ll see what’s best for me.
Birkir Bjarnason proves why Derby County should seek a deal:
Bjarnason was a semi-regular during his time at Villa. He made 47 appearances for the Villans over two-and-a-half years, helping the club to promotion last season.
There would be natural questions marks over his fitness. However, he proved against France that he is still match-fit, playing the full 90 minutes in the 1-0 loss.
Bjarnason was arguably Iceland’s best player. Playing in a central midfield role, he posted four interceptions, three successful take-ons and an 81.1% pass-accuracy rate.
The 31-year-old outplayed teammate Gylfi Sigurdsson, a £45 million 2017 signing for Everton, as well as fellow midfielders Runar Sigurjonsson and Arnor Traustason.
The Rams are short on midfielders and wide options. Right now, Tom Lawrence and Martyn Waghorn are playing as wide forwards, but both are suited more to central roles.
Bjarnason would arguably be a better fit out wide. Moreover, his versatility could give Phillip Cocu more options in the middle alongside Duane Holmes and Graeme Shinnie.
The former Villa man has proven his fitness. And against the World champions, he showed he has ability to compete at the highest level. Now Derby, over to you…