Bruce rejects Turner talk

Black Cats rules out selling defender

Turner: Going nowhere despite links with Bolton

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Sunderland boss Steve Bruce has rejected rumours linking Michael Turner with a move away from the Stadium of Light.

Former Hull City defender Turner has been linked with a possible move to Bolton with Owen Coyle looking to bolster his defensive options.

Turner was missing from the Sunderland side that won 2-1 at Kilmarnock on Wednesday to fuel speculation over his future, but Bruce insists there was nothing sinister in the defender's absence.

Bruce admits he is looking to offload the likes of Matt Kilgallon, George McCartney and Nyron Nosworthy, but he insists he has no plans to lose Turner.

"There are players we'd like to move on, but Michael definitely does not fall into that category," Bruce told the Northern Echo.

"There are players we'd like to move on, but Michael definitely does not fall into that category."

Steve Bruce on Michael Turner

Quotes of the week

"I think we all know who I'm talking about - Nyron Nosworthy, Matt Kilgallon and George McCartney all need to go and play somewhere.

"They're the ones who we'll look to move on, but none of my first-team squad and certainly not Michael Turner. I want all of our big players to stay.

"The thing about Michael is that he's a big lad and he's been out for a long time. It's fair to say that he still needs more games, but he's coming back from a serious knee injury and it's important that we don't rush him."

Injury fears

Bruce has also played down injury fears surrounding full-back Phil Bardsley after he had to be substituted at Kilmarnock.

Bardsley had to come off during the 2-1 win with an adductor muscle problem but Bruce believes he should be fully recovered in time for Saturday's trip to Burnley

"I don't think there's any real problem there," added Bruce. "Phil should be back in training in the next couple of days."