Bristol City manager Lee Johnson has outlined that Republic of Ireland midfielder Callum O’Dowda may be on his way out of the club this summer if he does not sign a new contract at Ashton Gate.
O’Dowda has been reportedly attracting interest from a host of clubs including Leeds United and is out of contract next summer.
The 24-year old had a strong start to the season at Ashton Gate but an injury in March prematurely ended his campaign with some reports suggesting O’Dowda had actually been frozen out by manager Lee Johnson for his failure to pen a new contract.
Leeds United had shown interest in bringing the Irish international to Elland Road in January but a move never materialised, however, Marcelo Biela’s side may go in for him again during the summer as they look to bolster their attacking options for a promotion push.
Speaking to Bristol Live, City boss Johnson outlined that O’Dowda will have to be moved on if he refuses to sign a new contract and that he’s got to do what’s best for the club.
“I don’t know is the honest answer. I’ve said before that the door is always open – there is no issue with Callum on a personal and a professional level,” said Johnson. “ He’s a player that I want to do well. We have to do the right thing. And if the player’s not going to sign a new contract then we’ve got to move him on.”
“The most important thing is that they want to play for Bristol City – that’s the key. We want players who want to be here. I’m not saying that Callum doesn’t want to be here but I know that his head would have been turned by the speculation. Whatever happens we’ve got to do what’s right for Callum and what’s right for the football club,” he added.
A move away from Bristol City may the best thing for O’Dowda especially in his international career as he looks to play his way into Mick McCarthy’s plans for the European Qualifiers in September and October.
Despite lacking match fitness O’Dowda was included in the Irish squad for the games against Denmark and Gibraltar but failed to make an appearance off the bench as the Boys in Green picked up four points.