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The Bristol City manager Dean Holden has refused to confirm his side’s interest in the former Middlesbrough defender Ryan Shotton.

Shotton is currently a free agent having left Middlesbrough at the end of his contract in July.

And he is likely to be one of the names under consideration as Bristol City look to add to their injury-hit back-line.

Speaking to The Bristol Post earlier, Holden confirmed his intention to bring in a ‘defensive-type player’, who can provide cover in more than one position.

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And Shotton certainly ticks that box, having played right- and centre-back throughout his career.

When asked, however, if the 32-year-old – for whom Middlesbrough are reported to have paid £3 million in 2017 – is on his list of targets, Holden replied: “I don’t want to comment on names. I understand your probing – I get that and respect that. But at the same time I don’t want to speculate on any names. I don’t think it’s fair on the players themselves or on the club.”

Asked for a progress update on any potential arrivals, the 41-year-old said: “To be honest I’ve not been on my phone all morning so I’ve just come in off the training pitch.

“We trained a little bit later on the grass, so I’ve not checked my phone yet to see if there are any updates on that. As soon as there are, we’ll let you know.

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“We’ve had some initial discussions, as I said the other night, assessing what’s out there. Of course, it’s difficult in the free-agent market. Players out of contract for many different reasons so it’s about finding the right one and right fit for where we’re at at the moment and we’re working hard with that.”

Bristol City are currently without a trio of defenders, Alfie Mawson, Steven Sessegnon and Nathan Baker.

And with the international break fast approaching, now could be as good a time as any to bring in a player who may need time to get up to speed.

Would the former Middlesbrough man be a useful addition for City?

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