Bristol City injury update as Nigel Pearson provides stance on out-of-contract star

Tomas Kalas could play a part against Burnley. (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)Tomas Kalas could play a part against Burnley. (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)
Tomas Kalas could play a part against Burnley. (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images) | Getty Images
The Czech international has recovered from a groin injury - and is now playing for his future.

Nigel Pearson refuses to be drawn on Tomas Kalas’ future but admitted that he could play a part in Bristol City’s last two games after recovering from injury.

Kalas is in contention to feature against Burnley this weekend in the Robins’ final home fixture and penultimate match. The 29-year-old has not played since early March because of a groin issue that has affected him for most of the season.

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He was due to come back shortly after the international break but has suffered setbacks that have prolonged his period on the sidelines. His absence has meant that Zak Vyner has been the only recognised centre-back in the last few months but he will now compete with the likes of Cameron Pring and Kal Naismith for a starting berth.

Pearson said: “We’ve got Tomas who comes back into the squad which is really positive for us but I think for him as well. It would be very encouraging both for us and him to get some pitch time out of him over the last two fixtures.

“We’re in a relatively decent position fitness-wise, obviously we can’t get the long-term players back this season but we’ve continued to work hard on and off the pitch to keep the availability high so the competition on matchdays is still there.

“As I pointed out numerous times, I want the players to drive the competition. If we do that and it’s a really healthy competition, it means we have players who have better motivation.

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“We know what he (Kalas) is capable of as a player. There are other elements to it.

“It’s not really right for him to sit as a third party discussing him. They used to say in the 20s and 30s it was the done thing, old boy, so we’ll leave that one.

“He’s a player I like, he’s a person I like too but clearly it’s been a difficult 18 months for him. We’ll see how it goes over the next two games and yea - doors are never closed, you know.”

Kalas is out-of-contract at the end-of-the-season but a decision has not yet been made public on his future. He joined the club for a club record fee from Cheslea in the summer of 2018, and any departure would be sad given his five years of service.

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Several players in recent months have committed their future to the club but his situation is different to others. Nahki Wells, Max O’Leary and George Tanner have all extended their stay by a few years whilst the club activated Vyner’s one-year extension in his contract, amid speculation of interest from Brentford.

Asked about any update on contract talks, he said: “Not this week no… We just hope for Tomas, he plays a part over the next two games. I think that will clarify the situation.

“I don’t really want to talk too much about that. I don’t like talking about it on here, I know it’s something that will be speculated on but all I will say is I will make sure we keep you up to date when there are developments. It’s all I can offer for you at the moment.”

A decision however should be expected over the next few weeks however with Pearson’s preference being to conduct his transfer business early. The 59-year-old remained respectful about the situation, but believes that he did not see Kalas come back in the summer to prove his worth.

Pearson added: “We don’t need to see him train again. We know what he is capable of as a player. There are other elements to it. It’s not really right for him to sit as a third party discussing him.”

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