Bristol City close in on first summer signing as Oxford United man undergoes medical

The Robins are set to begin their transfer business early with the signing of a free transfer

<p>Mark Sykes is close to becoming Bristol City’s first piece of summer business. (Photo by James Chance/Getty Images)</p>

Mark Sykes is close to becoming Bristol City’s first piece of summer business. (Photo by James Chance/Getty Images)

Oxford United utility man Mark Sykes is reportedly undergoing a medical with Bristol City today, as the Robins close in on their first signing.

The 24-year-old is out of contract after he chose not to extend his contract with the U’s and will join the Robins on a free transfer.

Sykes held talks with Nigel Pearson and City chiefs over the last week which have turned out to be positive.

The 58-year-old personally watched Sykes amongst other players during Oxford’s match with MK Dons in April and has been impressed with what he’s seen as the player comes close to putting pen-to-paper.

According to the Football Insider, Sykes’ medical is taking place on Monday as he finalises the final part of his move to City.

He can play in central midfield as well as a wing-back, which would add depth to an area that has seen central midfielders like Ayman Benarous and Alex Scott deployed in.


The player will pen a three-year deal which will see him stay at the club until the summer of 2025.

Sykes did not play Oxford’s final match of the season as manager Karl Robinson wanted to include players that will be in their plans next season.

In total, Sykes made 136 appearances across a four-year spell with the League One outfit after joining from NIFL Premiership outfit Glenavon.

The summer transfer window opens on June 10 so it remains to be seen whether the club will announce his arrival or wait until the registration period is open to announce him.

Clubs have already announced new signings, such as Championship rivals Cardiff City announcing the signing of Forest Green Rovers midfielder Ebou Adams.


As well as Sykes, centre-back Elliot Moore has been linked with a move to Ashton Gate, though Pearson poured cold water on the rumours when asked if he was watching him specifically.

The 25-year-old was at Leicester City’s academy at the same time as Pearson and also played under him at Belgian outfit OHL.

In April he said: “Me and (assistant) Curtis (Fleming) decided to just go and have a look at one or two players who we have been viewing over a period of time.

“Elliot wasn’t one of them as it happens.

“I’ve had Elliott Moore at Leicester and at OHL. Why would I go and watch him in a game if I was going to watch Elliott? “He’s a good lad, he’s doing well at the level he is playing.”

Like Sykes he is out of contract but the club have an option to extend his deal with a clause in his contract.