Aron Gunnarsson: Iceland midfielder to leave Cardiff City after rejecting deal

Aron Gunnarsson
Aron Gunnarsson has won 76 caps for Iceland and led them to the Euro 2016 quarter-finals

Midfielder Aron Gunnarsson could leave Cardiff City next summer after turning down a new contract.

The Iceland captain's current deal expires at the end of the season.

Gunnarsson could extend his stay if Cardiff - second in the Championship - win promotion to the Premier League.

But Bluebirds manager Neil Warnock says the 28-year-old is interested in a move abroad having spent a decade in the Championship with Cardiff and previous club Coventry City.

"I understand where he is coming from, its not as if I think he is doing the wrong thing," said Warnock.

"We've spoken numerous times with Gunnars, I have been asking him now since pre-season to commit himself.

"But I understand Gunnars' point of view really, he has been in the Championship for 10 years [and] it's hard on your body.

"To play 46 games, plus your cup games, plus internationals all over the world, he feels he doesn't want to play in the Championship next year.

"I can understand that and I don't blame him. But he said 'I would love to get us up,' and then its a different ball game. He would stay and play in the Premier League - if I wanted him."

Warnock believes the 76-times capped Gunnarsson could improve his stock if he performs well in for Iceland at the World Cup in Russia in 2018.

"If he has a good one there could be all sorts of clubs looking at him," he added.

"He loves Cardiff City and he would love us to go up. He said to me 'I would love to get you your record promotion. I have no interest in leaving in January, I would love to help us go up,' which is all I can ask really."

Gunnarsson, winger Nathaniel Mendez Laing and striker Kenneth Zohore are all likely to miss out on second-placed Cardiff's home game with Norwich on Friday when the Bluebirds are looking to stretch a three-match winning run.

Midfielder Loic Damour has been offered improved terms by the club after impressing since his arrival last summer on a free transfer from French second tier outfit Bourg Peronnas.

Warnock said Frenchman Damour, 26, had signed on the "lowest wage" and deserved better.

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