Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Shotton Has Right Skills to Play in the Top Flight

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Shotton Has Right Skills to Play in the Top Flight

Article excerpt

Byline: PHILIP TALLENTIRE philip.tallentire@trinitymirror.com @PTALLENTIREGAZ

MIDDLESBROUGH target Ryan Shotton has all the tools to be a Premier League defender.

That's the considered opinion of the Birmingham Mail's Blues reporter Brian Dick. Boro have been keeping tabs on Shotton and, according to Harry Redknapp, have had a bid rejected.

"We had an offer from Middlesbrough, it didn't meet our valuation," the City boss said on July 22.

Shotton, who joined the Blues in a cut-price PS300,000 transfer last summer, was left out of Redknapp's squad for Saturday's friendly loss to Swansea.

Explaining the reason for the 28-year-old's absence, Redknapp said: "He trained this morning, we had an offer from a club and I think he would like to move if he gets the opportunity."

There's no doubt Boro are looking to strengthen at the back and Mail reporter Dick, who covers the Blues home and away, thinks Shotton is a quality defender.

"He's very good with the ball in front of him, attacking it," he said. "I wouldn't want to say he's just a kick it, head it, clear it, type of centre-half.

"He's actually very quick, which helps the team get out of trouble defensively. It means they can play a slightly higher line.

He's quick... good strong in the gets the "He's got the tools to be a Premier League centrehalf, he's good in the air, strong in the tackle and gets the odd goal."

Brian Dick says Birmingham are keen for Shotton to stay but will reluctantly let him leave if, and only if, the price is right.

"He hasn't agitated for a move and Birmingham don't need to sell," he added.

"I would think he would be flattered that a club like Middlesbrough are interested and maybe he sees them as a quicker route to the Premier League.

"Birmingham will be holding out for their valuation and if they get it then it would represent a excellent business on a player who cost just PS300,000."

Dick says Shotton, a converted full-back, prospered at Birmingham when the then manager Gary Rowett paired his new signing with Michael Morrison at the heart of the defence. …

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