What happens next for Alex Scott as interest grows in Bristol City starlet

Alex Scott is sure to attract more suitors after his exploits for England but what will Bristol City do if a bid comes in?

<p>Alex Scott is no longer just known to Bristol City with the footballing world watching on. (Photo by JOE KLAMAR/AFP via Getty Images)</p>

Alex Scott is no longer just known to Bristol City with the footballing world watching on. (Photo by JOE KLAMAR/AFP via Getty Images)

This summer may be lacking a World Cup due to the intense heat of Qatar, but England football fans have had reason for cheer with the U19s clinching European Championship success in Slovakia.

Playing a key part in the campaign was 18-year-old Bristol City starlet Alex Scott, who featured in all five games, including the final and came off the bench to score an excellent headed equaliser in the 2-1 win over Italy in the semi-final.

The cultured midfielder, who made most of his 27 appearances for the Robins last season from the right-hand side of defence, has been linked with a string of Premier League clubs over the past year.

Scott was signed to the City academy in 2019 after just 15 appearances for his hometown club, Guernsey FC, where he debuted as their youngest ever player.

After a breakout season in 2021/22, and given the huge interest in his signature, City fans are quite rightly wondering whether Scott will still be at Ashton Gate when their Championship season commences on July 30th.

City have enjoyed a quietly efficient transfer window so far, signing midfielder Mark Sykes, utility player Kai Naismith and League Two player of the season Kane Wilson. Crucially, the latter two can both play right back, freeing up Scott for his preferred central midfield role.

Scott staying could hinge on the future of City’s other two top assets; Antoine Semenyo and Han-Noah Massengo, strongly linked with Celtic and Nice respectively. It looks likely at least one, if not both, could leave, which would put City in a better position financially to resist offers for Scott.

Importantly, Massengo is out of contract next summer, with this transfer window being the last where the Robins could command a fee for the 20-year-old France star signed in 2019.

If reports are to be believed, City have placed a whopping £25m fee on Scott that is clearly based on future potential and warning off prospective suitors including Spurs, Everton, Leeds and West Ham.

In the Robins favour, Scott signed a four-year contract last August and shows no desire to leave. Potential cash injections from the sales of Semenyo and Massengo mean Premier League interest in the ‘Guernsey Grealish’ can be comfortably ignored.

Despite this, money talks in football, with every player having a price. The harsh reality is City are unable to compete financially with other Championship clubs, being one of only five teams in the division to have never been in receipt of Premier League riches.

The Robins reported losses of £38.4m in 2020/21, due to the Coronavirus pandemic, an escalating wage bill and lack of player sales. Those sales will may come this summer

City unfortunately have a history of being forced to sell their best players in recent times; Joe Bryan, Bobby Reid, Adam Webster, Lloyd Kelly and club captain Josh Brownhill among the most notable. These have mainly been from necessity, and is a pattern likely to repeat.

With Alex Scott there are reasons to be optimistic. He seems happy to remain, money can be recouped elsewhere and staying at City is in both parties interests. Manager Nigel Pearson looks likely to stick with his established 5-3-2 formation, meaning Scott almost certainly begins the season in central midfield.

Any move to a Premier League club would mean a reduction in game time. At City, Scott can start every week in his favoured position and continue to develop, both technically and physically.

As the jewel in City’s crown he could yet lead them to the Premier League… In the life of a football fan, hope springs eternal.