City firm over Distin
By Graeme Bailey. Last Updated: January 1, 1970 1:00am
Manchester City insist that Sylvain Distin does not have permission to talk terms with any club.
The French defender was reported to be preparing for talks with Middlesbrough, while Portsmouth were also looking to offer terms.
However, City insist Distin is expected to travel with the rest of their squad to China - where they play two games on a pre-season tour before returning early next week.
"Sylvain has not been given permission to speak to any club and he will be travelling with us to China," said a City spokesman.
Distin is at loggerheads with City over his future - as he has just one year left on his current contract and at the moment shows no signs of signing a fresh deal at Eastlands.
The only two players with permission to stay behind are Andy Cole and Nedum Onuoha - who are still recovering from knee and calf problems.