Despite being signed from FC Basel just last summer, Birkir Bjarnason could already be on his way out from Aston Villa a year later.

The Icelandic midfielder is a target for Empoli in Serie A, with contacts starting a few days ago, which is a move that would enable him to return to a country he spent a couple of years in during spells at Pescara and Sampdoria between 2012 and 2015.

However, as tends to be the case with transfers going in this direction, the player’s wages, even if Villa are in the Championship, remain an issue.

Gazzetta dello Sport believe the trail leading Empoli to the Iceland international is ‘hot’, but they will need to find a way to provide him with an adequate salary.

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The 30-year-old has been a regular for his country ever since his debut in 2010, and played all 270 available minutes at the 2018 Russia World Cup, including a great 1-1 draw against Argentina.