Bristol City manager Nigel Pearson has confirmed long-term absentee Andreas Weimann is in ‘great condition’ in an interview with the official club website, with the Robins recently returning to pre-season training.
The 29-year-old attacker spent the vast majority of last season out injured after picking up an anterior cruciate ligament injury at the end of October and was unable to get fit before the end of last season, putting his Bristol City career in doubt.
Weimann’s previous deal at Ashton Gate was due to run out in the summer and after suffering such a severe injury, there was considerable speculation over where his next destination would be.
Despite the length of this contract surprising many, Weimann has otherwise been relatively injury-free during his time in Bristol and now seems to be on the way back after a long spell out, giving Nigel Pearson another option going into the new season.
Speaking to the Bristol City club website about the fitness of new signing Rob Atkinson, Nathan Baker’s return to the club and Weimann’s progress, the 57-year-old manager said: “Rob has come in and he’s a bit behind the rest of the squad fitness-wise but he’s a character and even in his few days training we’ve seen enough to suggest he’ll do exactly what we expect from him.
“To have Nathan Baker back as well is a real bonus and testament to him he was prepared to negotiate on lower terms which shows his personal commitment to what we’re trying to do. That was a pleasant surprise.
“Andi Weimann is in great condition as well, so all those things together feel like positive moves for us – so far, so good.”
If the 29-year-old can stay fit for the foreseeable future and return to his pre-ACL injury form, the Robins will have been vindicated in offering him a new three-year deal.
Giving out a new contract to someone like Weimann with his Championship experience and versatility would usually be a no-brainer for a solid second-tier side like Bristol City.
But ACL injuries can have long-lasting effects and it’s great to see the club deciding to put their faith in him and extend his stay, despite Covid-19 and the financial impacts that have come with it for clubs around the EFL.
Now is the time for the Austrian to repay that faith and help the Robins to vastly improve on their 19th-place finish from last season.