Bristol City midfielder Kasey Palmer’s move to Cardiff City has broken down after talks between the three parties ended recently.
The former Chelsea player is expected to be one of several departures from Ashton Gate this summer, with manager Nigel Pearson explaining that four in-contract players have been told that they can move on for pastures new, as they will get little to no game time at Ashton Gate in the coming season.
Unfortunately for all, the Bluebirds have pulled the plug on a move that would have seen Palmer head over the Severn Bridge, following in the wake of Aden Flint and Marlon Pack moving further along the M4 in recent years.
Reading between the lines, it is apparent that a financial deal cannot be agreed.
Palmer is free to leave the Robins and he came close to departing in the January transfer window when there was interest from QPR and Birmingham City, with the Blues closest to completing a move.
Palmer then remained at Ashton Gate as moves elsewhere broke down, and did not play for Bristol City in the latter half of the season.
In fact, the 25-year-old Jamaica international has not played since coming on as a sub in the 1-2 home defeat to Nottingham Forest on 19 October.
And it was just one Championship start in 2021/22 for Palmer, as he began the first game against Blackpool, playing 75 minutes, and no more. Five appearances from the bench came, but no more starts.
Pearson was asked on the forgotten midfielder last December and the Robins boss explained that there was still a chance for the former Charlton youth product to work his way into contention.
“A player for our football club who’s currently training with us, that’s where we are,” Pearson said of him, when asked what Palmer’s status is. “If he does enough, he might be included. So that doesn’t change.
“To be absolutely honest with you, discussing individuals like that, he’s not been included because other players have done more. Likewise, if he plays himself back into contention then so be it, fine.”
No doubt Bristol City are not minded to help a rival or to pay to release a player.
The club has shown in letting Adam Nagy leave for a free transfer, but with conditions, that it is flexible on helping players to move on, but the Palmer situation needs resolving.
He has one year left on his contract and according to our sources he could continue at the Robins and try and fight his way into contention, before leaving on a free transfer next summer.
That looks unlikely however, and the club may have to consider new scenarios if Palmer’s wages are to be shifted from off the books that would enable City to recruit again themselves. Or else be left with an unused asset on the sidelines.
“Never blame players for earning good money. Why not?” asked Pearson ahead of the final home game against Hull City. “We put them on that money. And they’re earning that money,” he added of the high-earning players in BS3 that might find it difficult to get moves elsewhere. He did not reference Palmer specifically.
Pearson also clarified that his role was to sort who would be part of the club’s future, not to “offload” players. The remit for player sales is headed up by CEO Richard Gould.
Regime change at a football club can be an expensive business and Bristol City are still recovering from the pandemic years.
The Palmer situation could rumble on for some time yet.