James Bree: Aston Villa sign right-back from Championship rivals Barnsley

Aston Villa have completed the signings of Birkir Bjarnason from Basel and James Bree from Barnsley for undisclosed fees.

The Iceland worldwide is set to undergo a medical with Aston Villa this week.

He was part of Basel's title-winning side in 2015/16 and scored his country's first-ever goal in a major tournament; against Portugal at Euro 2016.

He told Sky Sports: "Aston Villa is a fantastic club". I am now looking forward to getting out on to the pitch and helping the team'.

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He will add competition at Villa for veteran defender Alan Hutton, giving manager Steve Bruce an interesting selection decision to make in the short term, while in the long term it is expected that Bree will nail down the position as his own.

Bree, 19, has signed a four and a half year contract at the club and followed the acquisition of Nottingham Forest midfielder Henri Lansbury at the end of last week. It's going to be great to get started to see what I can do for the team.

The Iceland global, who is known as "Thor" in his homeland, had said before Christmas that he would only leave Basel to move to either England or Germany - specifying the Premier League as his dream. Pushing for promotion is definitely the first thing I want to help the team do.

  • Lawrence Cooper