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Page last updated at 16:47 GMT, Sunday, 17 May 2009 17:47 UK

Hibs boss cool on Jones exit talk

Hibernian captain Rob Jones
Jones was signed from Grimsby in the summer of 2006

Hibernian manager Mixu Paatelainen refused to be drawn on the future of captain Rob Jones.

Following a terrific display in the 0-0 draw with Celtic, the 29-year-old threw his shirt into the crowd in what could be interpreted as a farewell gesture.

"Everyone puts one and one together and gets three," Paatelainen told BBC Scotland when asked about Jones.

"There's no point speculating. There is a lot of talk and rumours but we'll wait and see what the summer brings."

Jones, who stands at a towering 6ft 7in, signed a four-year deal at Easter Road on his arrival from Grimsby in June 2006.

He was the subject of repeated bids from Colchester in January, while Nottingham Forest have been strongly linked with the centre-half.

Paatelainen was full of praise for his skipper after a commanding display against Celtic.

"He was rock solid again but he's been like that all season for us," said the manager.

"The players selected him as their player of the year and quite rightly. He's been absolutely fantastic in the heart of our defence."

Striker Steven Fletcher has attracted interest from Celtic and the English Premier League, while Burnley are keen on forward Derek Riordan.

But Paatlainen was more interested in discussing possible additions to his squad rather than any possible departures.

"We're always looking to improve," he added.

"We want to develop the existing players - that's the first and foremost job.

"But we want to add to our squad as well and bring in quality in areas where we feel we might lack a little and hopefully be better off next season."

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see also
Burnley, Lokomotiv track Riordan
15 May 09 |  Hibernian
Hibs' Fletcher seeks England move
12 May 09 |  Hibernian
U's boss still wants Hibs' Jones
28 Jan 09 |  Colchester
Hibs sign up Jones from Grimsby
08 Jun 06 |  Hibernian

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