Bristol City released midfielder in their retained list.
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Bristol City released midfielder in their retained list.

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Bristol City midfielder Matty James has left the club, but contract talks with Joe Williams are ongoing as the Robins unveil the players they will keep for next season.

James, a midfield veteran, joins Andy King and Andreas Weimann on the list of Ashton Gate players who were released when their contracts expired. Joe Williams’ contract ends at the end of the month, but the club says they are still in negotiations with him about negotiating a new agreement to keep him playing for Bristol City.

Bristol City has released nine young players, including defender Duncan Idehen and goalkeeper Harvey Wiles-Richards, while loan signings Scott Twine and Dire Mabude have returned to their respective clubs.

Bristol City paid tribute to Matty James, who won the Premier League with Leicester in 2016 and will turn 33 in July. James made 115 appearances for City after signing in 2021, scoring four goals. He follows fellow Leicester alumni Andy King, who announced his retirement last week, and Andi Weimann, who moved in January to finish the final six months of his Bristol City deal on loan at West Brom.

Weimann’s name will now be put to the club’s record scorers wall at Ashton Gate; he joined City in 2018 and scored 51 goals in 216 games.

“The departing players have all been fantastic servants to this club,” stated manager Liam Manning. “They are all outstanding professionals who have left their mark at Bristol City. “I wish them all the best for the future,” he continued.

Two major uncertainties remain for Bristol City fans and the club following the release of the retained list. Can Bristol City persuade Joe Williams to sign a new contract? Will the club wish to, and be able to, re-sign midfield playmaker Scott Twine on a permanent basis?

The latter returns to parent club Burnley, with the Lancashire side almost guaranteed to drop back to the Championship next season, but Bristol City has little control over whether he stays with Burnley, gets sold, or goes elsewhere.

Joe Williams may be more influenced by the club. Bristol City stated in its statement that ‘discussions with Joe Williams are ongoing’. The midfielder had a solid season at Ashton Gate once his usual injury problems subsided, and he was an important part of the club’s four-game unbeaten Cup run against two Premier League opponents, West Ham and Nottingham Forest.

Ben Acey, Zac Bell, Mac Boyd, Marlee Francois, Callum Hutton, Duncan Idehen, Dylan Kadji, Harry Leeson, and Harvey Wiles-Richards are among the nine young players released by Ashton Gate. Some, such as Dylan Kadji and Harvey Wiles-Richards, advanced farther into the first-team squad than others, although all were released at the end of their contracts.

The released and retained list in full is:

Players Over-24 released

Matty James

Andy King

Andreas Weimann

Players Under-24 released

Ben Acey

Zac Bell

McIntosh Boyd

Marlee Francois

Callum Hutton

Duncan Idehen

Dylan Kadji

Harry Leeson

Harvey Wiles-Richards

Contract Discussions ongoing

Joe Williams

Romani Rowe

Under contract in 2024/25

Players Over-24

Rob Atkinson

Harry Cornick

Rob Dickie

Ross McCrorie

Cameron Moir-Pring

Kal Naismith

Max O’Leary

Mark Sykes

George Tanner

Lewis Thomas

Zachary Vyner

Nahki Wells

Players Under-24 (*denotes first Professional Contract, starting July 1st)

Zack Ali*

Tim Ap Sion*

Taine Anderson*

Raphael Araoye

Tommy Backwell

Stefan Bajic

Brandon Bak*

Sam Bell

Ayman Benarous

Max Bird

Joshua Campbell-Slowey

Josey Casa-Grande

Kai Churchley

Tommy Conway

Joe Duncan

Taylor Gardner-Hickman

Calum Hewlett

Joseph James*

Jason Knight

Jamie Knight-Lebel

Jed Meerholz*

Anis Mehmeti

Elijah Morrison

Adam Murphy

Raekwon Nelson*

Ephraim Yeboah

Sebastian Palmer-Houlden

Billy Phillips*

Haydon Roberts

Marley Rose

Josh Stokes

Omar Taylor-Clarke

 

 

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