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Nathan Baker: Bristol City centre-back unlikely to play next season due to concussion

Bristol City centre back Nathan Baker
Nathan Baker had been a staple of Bristol City's defence before his concussion injuries

Centre-back Nathan Baker is not expected to play for Bristol City next season due to ongoing concussion, said manager Nigel Pearson.

Baker, 31, has not played since 30 November when he was taken off on a stretcher with a head injury during the Robins' defeat by Sheffield United.

He had already returned from another period out with concussion in October.

"We don't expect to see him in the squad this season," Pearson told BBC Radio Bristol.

"But in terms of making comments about timings or statements, I'm not going to make any further comments on that but it's very, very unlikely we will see him."

Speaking during Bristol City's first week of pre-season training, Pearson also said striker Antoine Semenyo is unlikely to be available for the start of the season due to injury.

Semenyo, who scored eight goals and contributed more assists than any other player last season, suffered the injury while away with Ghana, where he made his international debut.

"A scan suggests there may be a bit more positive news. But I don't really want to put a timeframe on this one. He may miss the start of the season, but apart from that, it's more about we'll have to be a bit patient with it," Pearson added.

The 22-year-old is out of contract next summer along with midfielder Han-Noah Massengo and Pearson refused to say whether the duo would be staying at the club.

"He's [Semenyo] a player that has attracted a lot of attention in terms of speculation but look, we would love to keep all our best players," Pearson said.

"I don't think I've ever said anything other than if he [Massengo] stays here, I'd be really happy.

"But I'm also conscious of the other side of the argument and that is that in an ideal world we don't want players to run their contracts down, especially when we've invested a lot of time and money in players.

"The ideal solution if Han-Noah stays is if he signs a new deal and that would be the outcome that I would prefer. If not I'm sure the speculation about him leaving will continue."

The Robins have signed wing-back Kane Wilson - who was voted League Two player of the season - from Forest Green Rovers, former Luton Town defender Kal Naismith and Oxford United midfielder Mark Sykes so far ahead of the new season.

Contract negotiations remain ongoing with midfielder Andy King regarding a player/coaching role, while Pearson said the team will "maybe do some more business" going forward.

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