Bournemouth coach says not involved in Jordan Zemura contract situation

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By The Echo

Bournemouth Gary O’Neil insists Jordan Zemura remains in his thoughts regarding team selection, but added: “We have three very capable left-backs.”

With Lloyd Kelly and Matias Vina returning to fitness, Zemura was a surprise omission from the squad to face Liverpool last weekend, having impressed in recent weeks.

The Daily Echo understands the 23-year-old was left out due to his ongoing contraction situation.

Zemura’s current deal expires this summer, after the club triggered a one-year extension clause in his contract in March 2022.

It is understood the club have offered Zemura a significant pay-rise from his current terms, but the London-born ace or his representatives are yet to respond or engage in discussions.

Speaking after the win over Liverpool, O’Neil said the Zimbabwe international’s absence was an “internal decision”.

Ahead of tomorrow’s trip to Aston Villa, O’Neil was asked if Zemura had a future at Cherries.

He said: “I think Jordan has had a good time here, of course.

“My job at the moment, I don’t get involved at all in contract situations, just purely on team selection.

“As we saw, Lloyd Kelly is back fit now and can play left-back.

“We’ve got a Uruguay international back available, Matias Vina, who has trained well.

“So we have three very capable left-backs at the moment. So some tough decisions for me, but also positives that we have more options.”

Asked if Zemura remains in his thoughts when picking his team, O’Neil added: “All of them are, always.

“I’ll always make an honest and what I believe to be a sensible decision around who is best to play.”

Zemura, who arrived from Charlton Athletic in 2019 after a successful spell on trial, made his first-team debut in September 2020.

His breakthrough campaign was last season, under Scott Parker, featuring in 33 Championship matches, helping the club clinch promotion.

Cherries have long been trying to tie Zemura down to a longer-term contract, but no agreement has been reached, with other Premier League clubs credited with an interest.