Pearce holds Distin hope
By Mark Buckingham
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Stuart Pearce does not feel it is a foregone conclusion that Sylvain Distin will move.
Stuart Pearce does not feel it is a foregone conclusion that Sylvain Distin will join Middlesbrough.
Distin is in talks over a move to The Riverside Stadium after Manchester City accepted an offer from their Premiership rivals.
The French centre half has rejected a new contract at City and has been handed the chance of a switch back to the North East.
But Pearce admits he would not be shocked if the former Newcastle United stopper decided that he wanted to stay at The City of Manchester Stadium.
"At this stage, for financial reasons, I have to offer Sylvain the chance to look elsewhere, but it would not surprise me if he said he wanted to stay," Pearce told the Manchester Evening News.
"If he sits down with me and says he wants to stay, I would be delighted and I will keep on at him all year to sign a contract extension."
Meanwhile, Pearce admits that, if Distin does opt to join Boro, he will have some of the windfall to spend on strengthening his squad.
He added: "I will certainly get some of the cash, then it is down to me to decide where we need strengthening the most.
"We have a bit of a conundrum. I will look at various options, then take an educated chance and make my recommendations to the chairman and chief executive."