Bent released by Villa, Vlaar offered new deal

Aston Villa have released striker Darren Bent, while defender Ron Vlaar has been offered a new contract.

Darren Bent has been released by Aston Villa following the expiry of his contract.

Bent moved to Villa Park in a record-breaking deal worth around £24million from Sunderland in January 2011, but struggled for a first-team place in the past two seasons.

He spent all of 2013-14 on loan at Fulham, and more temporary switches to Brighton and Hove Albion and Derby County followed in the most recent campaign.

After 25 goals in 72 appearances for Villa, Bent has been released, along with Enda Stevens.

Ron Vlaar, though, has been offered a new deal, with his current contract set to expire at the end of June.

Chris Herd, who suffered a torn medial ligament while on loan at Wigan Athletic in February, will be monitored during pre-season by manager Tim Sherwood.