Oxford United are under no pressure to sell defender Rob Atkinson this summer amid the latest reports that Bristol City and Celtic are battling out to secure his signature, according to the Oxford Mail.
Atkinson is a player that is attracting a lot of transfer attention this summer with the defender having enjoyed an impressive campaign in the English third tier with Oxford. In total, he managed to make 41 appearances in League One last term and helped the Us record 11 clean sheets on their way to the play-off semi-finals.
The latest report from The Sun on Sunday revealed that Bristol City are heavily interested in signing the defender this summer and that the Robins are prepared to pay around £1.6 million to secure his services.
That comes with the Robins reportedly prepared to hand Nigel Pearson the funds needed to strengthen his squad during the summer window.
The same report added that Celtic are also interested in making a move for the 22-year-old this summer as they aim to step up their preparations for next season under their new manager Ange Postecoglou.
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The latest update from Oxford Mail though reveals that Oxford are under no pressure to sell Atkinson this summer to either Bristol City or Celtic.
While the report adds that despite the £1.6 million valuation that has been suggested, the Us could still hold out for more than the £2 million they received from QPR last summer for Rob Dickie.
This could be a potential blow to Bristol City and Celtic’s hopes of securing a move for Atkinson this summer, with the Us seemingly content to play hardball over his situation during the transfer window. It seems that the League One side are comfortable with his position because he still has another two years remaining on his current deal with them.
That means that if they were to keep the 22-year-old for another season then they could still have the option of cashing in on him next year. Bristol City appear to be very keen on him and he is someone that Pearson clearly feels is an ideal player to bring into Ashton Gate. So, it will be interesting to see how far the Robins push Oxford to sell him to them.]
Oxford are right to do all they can to keep hold of the defender because if he remains with the club then they will have a strong chance of challenging for promotion again next term. However, the draw to play for either Bristol City or Celtic might too much for the 22-year-old to resist.