What does the future hold for Aston Villa's Birkir Bjarnason?

Dean Smith head coach of Aston Villa in action during a training session  at Bodymoor Heath training ground on January 03, 2019 in Birmingham, England.

Icelandic midfielder Birkir Bjarnason was purchased in 2017 when Steve Bruce was the Aston Villa manager.

Birkir Bjarnason of Aston Villa in action during a training session at the club's training ground at Bodymoor Heath on April 02, 2019 in Birmingham, England.

It is perhaps fair to say that in the overall scheme of things, it hasn't worked out for Birkir Bjarnason at Aston Villa, who has seemingly become a forgotten man at the club. 

The 31-year-old joined Villa during that perhaps now-infamous January transfer of 2017, when Bjarnason, Scott Hogan, Henri Lansbury, James Bree and Conor Hourihane walked through the doors - it could be argued that only the latter has worked out. 

For the first 12 months or so, Bjarnason struggled in a Villa shirt as Steve Bruce played him out wide, and even at left-back at times, but he was unable to prove his worth. 



But then during Villa's 1-0 win over Nottingham Forest at the City Ground, Bjarnason was deployed in the middle of the park from the substitutes bench, and all of a sudden, he had found his place in the team. 

He started producing great performances and even made the midfield spot his own at times, but that soon faded as Villa entered their third season in the Championship.

The versatile player, who started Dean Smith's first game in charge against Swansea in October, saw his game time reduced towards the back end of Villa's promotion campaign. 

Martin Olsson of Swansea City is fouled by Birkir Bjarnason of Aston Villa during the Sky Bet Championship match between Aston Villa and Swansea City at Villa Park on October 20, 2018 in...

He only started three games since the turn of the year, and it wouldn't be a surprise to see him parting ways with the club this summer.

It is quite obvious that he doesn't fit Smith's profile, and plus his age would put him off and if Villa allowed Whelan to go then there's no reason why the Iceland international won't depart.

Whelan outperformed Bjarnason by a country mile last season, yet he was let go, as Villa are seemingly looking for a young and hungry player to fill that defensive-midfield role. 

TOULON, FRANCE June 15.  Douglas Luiz #5 of Brazil and Kaoru Mitoma #8 of Japan challenge for the ball  during the Brazil U22 V Japan U22 Final match at the Tournoi Maurice Revello at...

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