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Aston Villa set to rival Derby County for Premier League midfielder

Aston Villa are set to rival Derby County for Stoke City midfielder Glenn Whelan this summer, according to the Derby Telegraph.

Aston Villa boss Steve Bruce is keen to add to his squad further following the signing of former Chelsea and England defender John Terry this week.  Aston Villa CEO Keith Wyness is hoping that signing Terry will convince other players to sign for the club.

He said: “As John said himself, he didn’t want to be in a relegation battle and hopefully players might come and think ‘I want to be with a promotion chasing team’.”

One Premier League player that Bruce is hoping to convince to sign for Villa is Stoke City midfielder Glenn Whelan, who Villa have been linked with before.  It was reported that Stoke rejected a £500,000 bid from the Championship side last month and want £1 million.

Whelan, 33, also has interest from Villa’s Championship rivals Derby County.  Derby recently sold one of their key midfielders, Will Hughes, to Watford and will be looking for a replacement.  Gary Rowett reportedly wants to sign “consistent, dogged performers” and Whelan is certainly this type of player.

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Aston Villa are also reportedly in “pole position” to re-sign Manchester United goalkeeper Sam Johnstone on loan this season.  The 24-year-old spent last season on loan at Villa, making 21 league appearances.  However, he has also been linked with Garry Monk’s Middlesbrough recently.

Steve Bruce is trying to put together a team capable of promotion back to the Premier League after Villa were relegated in 2016.  With the signing of John Terry, and the club being linked with a whole host of Premier League players, Villa could do very well in the Championship this season.

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