Bristol City have stepped up their interest in Rob Atkinson, according to Bristol Live reporter Gregor MacGregor.
Reports from The Sun first revealed that the Robins were plotting a move for the Oxford United defender as Nigel Pearson looked to bolster his back line for the new season ahead, while Scottish giants Celtic are also keen.
That report claimed that City were prepared to pay about £1.6million for the player in order to get a deal done.
That initial interest in the 22-year-old appears to have been followed up now, with Bristol Live reporter MacGregor saying that a formal offer in excess of £1.4million has been made.
Understand that #BristolCity have a bid in excess of £1.4m on the table for Oxford United defender Rob Atkinson. The Robins are waiting to hear back on that, and whether a deal for the centre-back will be agreed. #OUFC #CelticFC
— Gregor MacGregor (@GeeMacGee) June 22, 2021
Taking to Twitter, MacGregor said: “Understand that Bristol City have a bid in excess of £1.4m on the table for Oxford United defender Rob Atkinson.
“The Robins are waiting to hear back on that, and whether a deal for the centre-back will be agreed.”
The Oxford Mail have claimed that the League One side are under no pressure to sell the player this summer with Atkinson seen as a big part of their plans to challenge for promotion in the season ahead.
However with Bristol City and Celtic both clearly keen, it means that it could be a tough task to keep hold of the player.
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This is a real show of intent from Bristol City.
Rob Atkinson is one of the best talents outside of the Championship and so it’s no surprise that he’s attracting such substantial interest.
Rumours often do the rounds at this stage of the summer but with a bid being formally lodged, it’s a clear indication that the Robins are deadly serious about their intentions in the transfer market.
It would be a surprise to see Oxford cash in following a first bid, but Nigel Pearson’s side will have a much better idea of how likely a deal is to happen when they hear back from the League One club.