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Who should stay, who should go? 2021 edition

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    Who should stay, who should go? 2021 edition

    It's that time of year again.

    With the season drawing to a close, who will your club be releasing or trying to keep? And is that the right decision in your eyes?

    The BBC are collating their released list stories at the bottom of their May transfers page.

    Kicking off with Watford, the only first-team players that are out of contract are a set of back-ups we bolstered our squad with in January: left-back Achraf Lazaar, non-playing third-choice goalkeeper Rob Elliot, both formerly of Newcastle, and defensive midfielder Carlos Sanchez, last at West Ham. The latter two have made Instagram posts that suggest they are departing. I'm mildly surprised about Elliot, who seems like the sort of avuncular, experienced presence that one would look for in a number three - perhaps he fancies finding a first-team gig. Sanchez has looked tidy in his appearances and might have a been an option for an extension had we stayed down, but the club are likely to want to sign at least one starter in his position and at 35 he's not a long-term investment. Lazaar hasn't been especially impressive, although I'm told he was much improved on the final day when I was giving my attention to Derby-Wednesday. With Ashley Young rumoured to be returning to the club, there's no room for him.

    With those three departing (and long-term loanee striker Cucho Hernandez finally set to return from Spain), our squad numbers 25, not including those who still count as under-21s. That means that, thanks to Premier League squad limits, any new signings will have to displace an existing member of the team. First for the chop should be third-choice right-back Marc Navarro, who has barely featured since joining three years ago, but remarkably still has two years to run on his deal. Diminutive creative midfielder Domingos Quina, 21, was loaned to Granada in January - he's much vaunted by a section of our fan base who would like to see him get a run of games. He is obviously technically very gifted, admittedly doesn't do much wrong, and has perhaps been a victim of the side playing formations that don't suit him, but I've never seen him impose himself enough to warrant consistent selection and a series of managers haven't seemed especially fussed. It would not surprise me to see him leave, either on loan or permanently, given he only has a year left on his contract.

    Change is definitely required among the club's set of low-scoring strikers. Isaac Success returned from a year out this season and scored an enjoyable goal on the final day. He very occasionally shows flashes of what he could be - a powerful forward capable of both hold-up play and decent dribbling - but he frustrates more than he impresses. With three goals from 63 league appearances over five years it's surely time to attempt to cut our losses. Andre Gray looks like a superb footballer when he's off the ball, but all the intelligent runs in the world can't make up for a poor touch. He's a trier, and capable of occasional decent link play, but is not of Premier League quality.

    And then there's Troy. He's become steadily more immobile as the years have passed - although he claims this is to do with playing with injuries. Of his seven goals this season, six were penalties and his long-term injury coincided with our dramatic uptick in form as we switched to a formation that might not have suited him. I'm open to the idea of him being a presence on the bench, his character and presence both suited to the classic crash-around cameo, but can Troy adapt to being a bit-part player at a club where he's been the dominant personality and single constant presence for a decade? He and Gray, 33 and 30 respectively by the start of next season, both have a year on their contracts, while Success, 25, has a deal until 2023 - all three will be well remunerated. I would imagine there will be a paucity of takers for any of them, although sister club Udinese could potentially help us out with Success.

    The club's defence equalled the goals against record for the Championship (only going back to the rebranding in 2006) with just 30 conceded. On the other hand, chronic under-investment in the back-line was frequently cited as a reason for our relegation, so one might expect some investment there this time round. The club did add two centre-backs last summer, both from Udinese, and they were the starting pair during our latter season purple patch. Francisco Sierralta is a Rolls Royce, who for some reason was unable to get a game in Udine and was fifth-choice at Watford until mid-season, while partner William Troost-Ekong is prone to periodic lapses of possession that would worry me in the top flight, but is generally solid. Is that enough? Both are untested at this level - although Ekong played a bit in Serie A.

    If another centre-back was added, someone would likely have to be moved on. Long-serving Craig Cathcart, 32, and Christian Kabasele, 30, are popular figures at the club but can probably only just make a case for being Premier League standard, while England under-21 international Ben Wilmot, 21, slipped to fifth-choice under Xisco. He would seem worth investing in over the two other ageing options, but there's talk of another loan. Having been a loanee for 18 months and returned for this season, he would be wise to consider how many players return to contention having been sent out again after a period back in the squad. He and Cathcart hold contracts to 2023, while Kabasele's runs to 2024.

    I think that's probably enough. What about your lot?

    Previous editions: 2020 - 2019 - 2018 - 2017
    Last edited by JM Footzee; 12-05-2021, 19:04.

    Sheffield Wednesday

    To be honest I could just write "rubbish, shit, fuck off" for most of our heroes, but will rise above the temptation. We haven't announced the first team retained list yet, expected later this week.

    Out of contract
    Tom Lees - Was offered a new contract before Christmas and didn't sign. He's a good defender but needs an experienced voice alongside him, which is a bit of a concern given he's 30 now. Knackered his ankle the other week.
    Adam Reach - Scored some fine goals for us. Has spent the season blatantly phoning it in and trying not to get injured. Needs to go somewhere else and restart his career, been linked with Bristol City.
    Kadeem Harris - Bloody hell he's frustrating, getting into good positions then firing crosses into the stand. Doesn't track back enough. Probably off to rejoin Colin at Middlesbrough.
    Moses Odubajo - Error prone right back. Not popular with fans after he high fived Lewis Grabban after we conceded at Forest. Let him go and make mistakes for someone else.
    Osaze Urhoghide - You might remember his viral interview after the FA Cup win at Brighton in the before times. He's really kicked on this season, versatile player with a lot of potential. In a slim field he got my vote for Player of the Year. Don't expect he'll stay, he's been linked with all sorts of clubs at home and abroad.
    Alex Hunt - Terrier like midfielder whose progress has stalled this year. Could do a job next year in the third, or we could loan him out.
    Jordan Rhodes - A monument to our bad recruitment under the Dear Leader. He plays in a very specific way that you have to build the whole team around, which we didn't given that it's a rather old fashioned way of playing. Expected to sign for Huddersfield.
    Joost van Aken - Why it's always dangerous buying from the Eredivisie, he just never got to grips with the physical nature of English football. We looked at 300 centre backs before buying him and I can't imagine many of them would have been worse. Will end up in Germany or the Netherlands.
    Sam Hutchinson - He might get a new deal anyway as there's an appearance clause in his contract, not clear what this threshold is. The Dear Leader really likes him apparently. He'll stay if we offer him the chance.
    Elias Kachunga - Rubbish, shit, thank you and goodbye.
    Keiren Westwood - Been a great servant but we don't need all these keepers. I imagine he'll stay if we offer a new deal, but think we need to move on.
    Joey Pelupessy - Reliable if uninspiring holding midfielder. Expected to sign for Groningen.
    Matt Penney - Teams started targetting him last season realising he isn't particularly good at, well, defending. There's a player in there somewhere that someone will find a way to use.

    Definitely leaving
    Liam Shaw - Off to Celtic. Can play defence and midfield. He's been at the club since 2009 and we're getting all of 300k for him!
    Isaac Rice - u23 who made a sub appearance in the cup at Exeter.
    Luke Cox / Ben Hughes / Calum Huxley / Charlie Reaney - u23 players, expect they'll all end up in non league.

    Loans expiring
    Izzy Brown (Chelsea) - Rubbish, shit. Repeated reports of a poor attitude. Not going to be troubling Chelsea's team I imagine given that he wasn't even getting in the squad by the end.
    Jack Marriott (Derby) - Yes, Derby loaned us a player and chose not to recall him in January. Genuinely do not understand how this bloke is a professional footballer, he offered nothing at all. There was an interweb attempt to get him voted as player of the year as a protest against the club's incompetence. Rubbish, shit, fuck off, waste of space.

    Still under contract but might leave
    (We don't sell players much because the Dear Leader doesn't like doing so but let's pretend we might)
    Barry Bannan - Signed a new deal at Christmas. He could definitely do a job for a Championship club if there was interest and he's a player we could get money for.
    Josh Windass - Wigan fans warned about his attitude and approach and there was evidence of that, but he does score and create goals, again he's a player who would attract interest from a middling Championship club, someone like Coventry or Millwall.
    Joe Wildsmith / Cameron Dawson - Both are homegrown keepers who are prone to dropping occasional clangers and you'd have concerns about them going all the way through a promotion campaign (quiet at the back there). There were some murmurings about us borrowing some lad from Villa so we could get a young loanee in and sell one of these to reduce the wage bill.
    Julian Borner - Your team would not be improved by having him in it, but I would very much like someone, anyone, to take him off our hands.
    Massimo Luongo / Dominic Iorfa - Both are good players who have had significant injury problems this season. No-one would buy them today, but if they got fit and started the season with a run of games they are the sort of players who might get sold on the last day of the window.

    I have no idea what sort of players we might sign, Moore likes using the loan market so we might get some decent young players. Today we've been linked with a Southampton defender called David Agbontohoma. Believe we're still under a transfer embargo but the club won't tell us anything (full stop) about this. As the Athletic said the other day, we're not a destination club and end up signing "broken" players rather than those who particularly want to join. Happy days!
    Last edited by longeared; 12-05-2021, 20:20.



      So many movements I may have missed someone - basically all the out of contract players bar one - Udoh - have been released. The three loanees -
      Matija Sarkic, Matt Pennington and Harry Chapman have finished their spells, though we're apparently trying to sign Pennington from Everton, which would be great.

      With Sarkic gone, our second choice, Harry Burgoyne doesn't look up to it at the moment, so we'll be probably looking for a decent PL loanee. Haven't seen Cameron Gregory play.

      Ethan Ebanks-Landell, Aaron Pierre and Nathanael Ogbeta are under contract and will stay, especially the latter who looks a gem. I've heard there are rumours about Pierre being looked at by bigger clubs.

      Shaun Whalley, Oliver Norburn and Josh Daniels are under contract. Whalley has just re-signed, not seen much of the Daniels, hope we can keep Norburn. He's often frustratingly slow with decision-making, but he's not had a settled pattern to work with and snaffles a lot of possession.

      Rekeil Pyke is under contract. No idea whether he can play but we should keep him so NickSTFU gets to try his joke some time. Daniel Udoh has been offered a new deal, as noted above. Give he's the kind of player who'll feed off decent through balls or linking with a partner, I'm hoping this is an indication of more progressive football to come.

      Scott Goldbourne has retired. Ro-Shaun Williams, Donald Love, David Davis, Dave Edwards
      Brad Walker, James Rowland, Sean Goss, Josh Vela, Leon Clarke and Curtis Main have been released. Shame about Goss and a bit sad we didn't get to do a proper farewell to Edwards or Goldbourne. If we had to play another game, we'd need to put out some of the kids (admittedly, Tom Bloxham is 6'5" at 17), put a keeper outfield or play 3-3-2.

      I said to someone at work yesterday that Cotterill is the kind of manager who gets players to fit his plan rather than shuffling tactics and formations to fit his squad. Hope I'm right - he seems to be giving himself the opportunity to do that. No idea what the plan might be or who we'll sign, but there's a lot of paperwork coming.


        Three Manchester United academy graduates there in Williams, Love and Goss. None of them much cop? I seem to recall Williams getting some decent press for choosing to be pro-active and leave United for Shrewsbury.



          We're fairly settled, which is an usual feeling after the last six season's comings and goings.

          Questions do hang over our four January loans, all of whom have performed remarkably and, arguably, are the reason for our post-Christmas improvement. All four are contracted to clubs who'll be in the Championship which muddies the waters even further. So them first.

          Charlie Austin: Oh stay please! His mentoring of Lyndon Dykes has been brilliant, they've struck up a partnership that could rip this division apart. It'll be about money of course. It seems likely he'll be spending more time on the subs bench at WBA than he would with us. He's already a legend locally, and said he'd love to play in front of a home crowd again. So I'm cautiously optimistic.

          Stefan Johansen: Warburton reckons this team was made for him, not intentionally, it's just that his style of play suits the team, and the team suits the way he plays. He's been a joy to watch. Certainly our best midfielder since Ale Faurlin, possibly even since Ray Wilkins. Again it's money. Fulham may want him back, but they've shelved him both times they've been promoted so he might not have the warmest feelings towards the, but I'm certain someone else will. Chances are 50/50 he'll stay.

          Sam Field: Lots of upside. Young, intelligent, perceptive, makes very few mistakes. I don't know why WBA wouldn't want him. A slim chance of him staying with us I reckon.

          Jordy de Wijs: Just looking at him will scare the shit out of many players, but he's a solid CB with a better touch than his appearance suggests. He's carrying an injury history which might turn other teams away, but I don't really see why Hull wouldn't want him back now they're promoted. 50/50 at best.

          On the way out probably:

          GK Joe Lumley: Lost his place to Seny Dieng who's been excellent. Came back for a couple of games when Dieng was injured/suspended and performed admirably, but nevertheless Dieng was straight back in the team. Apparently "words were spoken" between Joe and Warbs so it looks as if he'll be gone. Shame he's a good lad. Not as good as Seny though.

          RB Todd Kane: splitting the position with Ozzie Kakay most of the season Then Toddy gave a really stupid interview to an online vlog where, he said he was about to be offered a ?13 million move Sheffield United but came to QPR instead (?!) and that someone who'd only played in the Scottish second division (Kakay) shouldn't be selected instead. This didn't go down well with fans or management and he found himself sitting on the bench for the rest of the season. Except for the match against Brentford where he traded insults with a Bee player and found himself suspended for seven games. He's probably cleaned out his locker already.

          CB Geoff Cameron: is moving back to the US to play for Cincinatti.

          That's basically it. If Charlie doesn't sign we'll be in the market for another striker. In midfield if we lose JoJo and/or Field, we have Luke Amos, and Tom Carroll coming back from long-term injuries. Not the same level but OK, and Amos has the potential to be better than OK.


            As it goes Jordy de Wijs signed for us today.

            Also fairly solid rumours that Austin and Field are about to.

            (Oh, be still my beating heart!)
            Last edited by Amor de Cosmos; 13-05-2021, 20:33.


              Originally posted by JM Footzee View Post
              Three Manchester United academy graduates there in Williams, Love and Goss. None of them much cop? I seem to recall Williams getting some decent press for choosing to be pro-active and leave United for Shrewsbury.
              I thought Williams was great last season as part of a solid 3 with Ebanks-Landell and Pierre. This year Pierre has been out injured a bit, EE-L has suffered a dip in form and Ro-Shaun has looked exposed and error-prone. There's a good player in there but he really needs a decent unit around him and a predictable pattern ahead of him.

              Goss was one of the three really creative players we had (along with Chapman and Ogbeta - Whalley is always a bit too random to count as what he creates is mostly his own chances). He's a lovely passer and I'd have kept him but I suspect he doesn't fit the Cotterill plan. I'll predict he'll be snapped up and will score/assist against us next year.

              Love was a solid worker but his defensive attributes didn't make up for his distribution and relative lack of pace for a wide player. He struck me as a very orthodox full-back in an era when even the most defensive FBs are expected to overlap a bit more effectively than he did. Seemed like a nice lad. Again, he's probably just not the right fit for SC's plans and he'll find a side. He'll probably join the fairly exclusive club of ex-Salop players who won't score against us, though.


                Scunthorpe United

                They've responded to their 22nd place, lucky to avoid relegation finish by releasing 17 (SEVENTEEN) players. They used the most players of anyone, so ended up with a lot of dead wood, but there are some surprising names, including:

                Our best players:
                Kevin van Veen, Abo Eisa and player of the season Alex Gilliead.

                Good players who are also experienced:
                Mark Howard (GK), Junior Brown and Jem Karacan.

                The only players offered contracts are ones who are young enough to generate compensation if they leave, in particular John McAtee.

                The above illustrates that they're not interested in anyone who commands any sort of wages, and are aiming to improve next season with players who are younger, rawer and not as good. Dead certs for relegation.


                  jwdd27 I thought Salop's 12 plus returning loanees was a lot.

                  Surprised (and pleased for him) that Gilliead was your POTS. I didn't think he'd had enough game time - plus not really living up to expectations at Shrewsbury.


                    Originally posted by ChrisJ View Post
                    jwdd27 I thought Salop's 12 plus returning loanees was a lot.

                    Surprised (and pleased for him) that Gilliead was your POTS. I didn't think he'd had enough game time - plus not really living up to expectations at Shrewsbury.
                    Well, it's a bit "tallest midget", being the best of that bunch, but yeah, he's been decent and seems a good lad. He and the other two "good" players (plus half decent defender Harrison McGahey) were offered new deals (which they rejected) in January, so they haven't wilfully kicked out their best players (other than by offering them substandard wages of course).


                      Wimbledon only released three players in a radical change to their normal summer strategy. The manager has identified the regular churn of around nine/ten permanent players every summer as one reason for the squad always fighting a relegation battle rather than building with each campaign.

                      The three players who have gone (Luke O'Neil, Shane McLoughlin and Callum Reilly) were all solid, reliable ones to me but I really have little clue how they've performed over the last 15 months for obvious reasons. I wouldn't say their departure will be met with outrage but they'll be wished well.

                      It's going to be weird that there will be a number of players at clubs that fans will end up simply never having seen play for them. Their names will crop up and be met with "Did he play for us? I can't recall him." and everyone will remember that it was during the lost season of 20/21. That is going to be even more pronounced for loan players.

                      I don't think even watching all of a club's games on streams will really give you a real idea of a player or imprint him on your memory properly. That said, there are plenty of players I've watched live multiple times over one or more seasons and completely forgotten about but that's probably a combination of my age and their mediocrity.
                      Last edited by Ray de Galles; 21-05-2021, 08:23.


                        The near collapse of the transfer market last season means that most top flight teams are going to have big long lists of players they would like to get rid of.

                        At man utd the list is Romero and mata who are out of contract. They would really like West Ham to buy Jesse Lingard, and would like someone to buy andreas pereira and Diogo Dalot, who had less than stellar loan periods in italy. I think Matic might well be sold if there's any interest. Maybe jose will want to make it a three-peat with Nemanja. I don't understand why man utd gave Bailly a new contract, a decision nowhere near as puzzling as giving phil jones a new contract. Getting him out on loan will be quite the achievement.

                        Man utd are supposed to be in the market for jadon sancho, and a centre half (Apparently they want to buy varane, 10 years after they first tried) If they pull that off, sending Axel Tuanzebe out on loan to a premier league club might be a good idea as he needs games if he's going to develop into a player that could be useful. And if man utd buy jadon sancho, It might well be time to set Daniel James free, to gallop up and down the wing for leeds.

                        Then there's the issue of Pogba's contract heading into its final year, and David De Gea's position needs to be sorted out. There's no-one really at the moment who can afford to sign these players, and I don't see the pressing need to sell De Gea. People talk an awful lot of bollocks about goalkeepers, (Football pundits absolutely fucking hate goalkeepers. Jamie Redknapp thought lloris should have saved reguillon's own goal the other night) and he's nowhere near as bad as people make out. Similarly if man utd sell him, then Dean Henderson will be considered to be shit. It's tricky to know what to do. Gary Neville is going to call the man utd goalie a cunt, no matter who he is.

                        God only knows if they manage to move on any of these players. They should be prepared to be flexible with some of the prices, because I don't know how strong the market for these players is going to be. It could be worse, they could be arsenal who have about 35 players in their first team squad.


                          Cheltenham's retained list was released last week:

                          The following players have been released at the end of their contracts:
                          Alex Addai, Dan Bowry, Tahvon Campbell, Tom Chamberlain, Chris Clements

                          These players have been offered new contracts:
                          Matty Blair (has subsequently signed a 2 year deal), Scott Flinders, Max Harris (has subsequently signed a 1 year deal), Sean Long

                          The following loan players have departed at the end of their loans to go back to their parent clubs:
                          Finn Azaz, Josh Griffiths, Sam Smith, Indiana Vassilev, Callum Wright

                          No surprises there really. The players who were released have barely played all season. Addai and Campbell have been out on loan all season. Clements can feel slightly hard done by as he was in the team until getting injured for the rest of the season just before Christmas. I'm not convinced he'd make the step up though. Chamberlain was a youth player who never really threatened the first team and Bowry has never really been trusted by Duff since coming in from Charlton a couple of years back.

                          Of the players offered new deals, Matty signing for 2 years is great. He was fantastic in his first season for us and I can't wait to actually watch him in the flesh next season. Max Harris is a handy backup keeper. Flinders is a bit of a surprise. I expect him to reject his deal if he's not assured a starting spot. He's reaching his mid-30s now and will want to prove he's over the broken leg he got in January last year. Sean Long has been fantastic for us in the two years we've had him, even if he has had some niggly injuries. Last season he was played all along the back line and in midfield - his versatility will be crucial next season, so hopefully he signs back on.

                          Of the loanees - Finn Azaz was good, but League 2 was his level I think. He was never better than decent. Josh Griffiths had some awful moments in goal (conceded from over 100 yards) but was also a part of the tightest back line in the league. I wouldn't be surprised to see him loaned back to us in League 1. Whilst he has a great future, I'm not sure how I feel about that. Sam Smith looked good at times, but not great. He did score a couple of important goals in the run-in though. Vassilev didn't really get much of an opportunity to show what he could do so it's hard to judge. Callum Wright was, by some distance, the best of the lot. He was full of running, but his skillset was immense. I'd love for us to get him back from Leicester for a whole season. Not only was he a great runner and playmaker, he also knew where the net was - see his goal against Tranmere that was Live on Sky.

                          Of our contracted players, at the moment the only player that appears to be courting interest from other clubs is Will Boyle, who Sheffield Weds are apparently interested in. He's currently my favourite Cheltenham player and I'd be gutted for him to go, but he's a Yorkshire lad and, despite them being in the same league as us next season, Wednesday are levels above us in terms of size.


                            I know you're all agog waiting for news from Darlo, and as someone else has already put in the hard miles, here you go -



                              I wouldn’t expect much of a clear out at West Ham, as their stuttering end to the season that saw a few key injuries take the inevitable toll highlighted the fact that their squad is still on the thin side.

                              Fabian Balbuena is out of contract and set to leave on a free. With three other central defenders certain to be selected ahead of him and young Frederik Alves on the cusp of a first team breakthrough I don’t think Balbuena will be missed.

                              Andriy Yarmolenko is also likely to go. He’s too injury-prone these days and even when fit seems to be used only as a (low) impact sub to see out matches / wind down the clock. He won’t attract much of a fee, but the club will want him off the wage bill.

                              Another player they will take a huge financial hit on but will just want rid of should anyone express an interest is Felipe Anderson. His loan at Porto has been a disaster, with reports of the same sulky attitude and deluded sense of self-importance that we saw here the previous year. He’s barely made the bench in Portugal all season and Porto club officials will be driving him to the airport to make sure that he gets on the plane. Pre-Covid it’s possible that another club might have taken him for 5-10 million, but with transfer budgets shrinking almost everywhere, surely nobody is going to take that sort of gamble now.

                              Declan Rice seems genuinely happy/settled, and isn’t dropping veiled hints about wanting to win trophies, so I would hope we can hang on to him for the time being. The ‘reuniting with best mate Mason Mount at boyhood club Chelsea’ stories have subsided since Lampard got the push, and although there are regular reports of interest from the Manchester clubs, it’s the usual clickbait crap with no real substance. I’m more worried about Liverpool if Klopp embarks on a major restructuring, but whether they would pay what West Ham will want for him is debatable.

                              There has been speculation that Utd will be looking for around 25 million for Jesse Lingard. I hope they make the deal permanent because, despite a recent dip in form, he has been tremendous for us this year. If Utd get too greedy that might be problematic, as the Hammers need to make the best use of their limited budget to buy another striker, central midfield cover and probably another goalkeeper.


                                I'm always impressed when fellow-OTFers run through their squads and predict departures with such certainty, because Chelsea invariably seem to sell players who, to me at least, play important roles within the squad or have potential, but then perversely hang on to those with no future at the club. Wages, contract length, ambition and managerial bias are the reasons for the paradox, I assume.

                                Anyway, I'll have a bash.

                                The first issue is how many of the no-hopers will be moved on. Wiki informs me that, along with the departure of a couple of juniors, Victor Moses has already been sold to Spartak Moscow for EUR5m and that poor, old injury-ravaged Marco van Ginkel is to be released. We made progress with this category of player last summer, but we've still got Lewis Baker, Izzy Brown, Kenedy, Danilo Pantic, Michy Batshuayi, Davide Zappacosta, Ross Barkley, Matt Miazga, Tiemoue Bakayoko, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Jake Clarke-Salter, Baba Rahman and last and definitely least, Danny Drinkwater, to get out of the door.

                                From the current squad, I expect Giroud, Caballero, Emerson and perhaps Alonso to go. Maybe Ziyech too, who I sense wants out.

                                Milan want Tomori but I'd really like to keep him. Not sure if that's possible if they stump up the required fee though. There are a number of young talents out on loan who I'd like to see integrated into next season's squad, the likes of Gallagher, Broja, Sarr and Ampadu.

                                I expect to be mainly wide of the mark.


                                  Well I'm not suggesting that any of the players on my list will leave with certainty, other than the two players at the end of their contract. It's just a bunch of players who have no real future at the club, or need a move to get the first team football to develop. The market is very soft.


                                    Originally posted by The Awesome Berbaslug!!! View Post
                                    Well I'm not suggesting that any of the players on my list will leave with certainty, other than the two players at the end of their contract. It's just a bunch of players who have no real future at the club, or need a move to get the first team football to develop. The market is very soft.

                                    It wasn't a criticism. I'm genuinely impressed with the squad departure analyses that are ventured. I just wish that I had even a vague idea as to what my club were going to do. The ever-changing managerial berth doesn't help, of course.


                                      I don't think Oxford have announced their retained list yet, but there are not very many out of contract players anyway. We've triggered extra one year extension options for Mark Sykes and Alex Gorrin, which I'm pleased about.

                                      Out of contract, there's:
                                      Anthony Forde - utterly reliable, but suffers a little from being considered a utlity player. Fans are divided on whether we could do better. I'd keep him.
                                      Rob Hall - never the same player after serious injuries. Everyone loves him, but we also know he's not good enough any more. Has to be released, but it's definitely a sad feeling.
                                      John Mousinho - he's mainly in a coaching role now, but has said he wants to play a little next season, so is presumably considering a new playing contract. I suspect his main contract will be a coaching one though.
                                      Josh Ruffels - the big one. Oxford's longest serving player, at 27, he knows this is his chance to join a championship club. Personally I'm not convinced he's actually good enough for the championship. Gets a lot of goals and assists, which probably keeps the stats people happy, but struggles against the trickier wingers in league one. I suspect he'll be off though, which is sad, as I'd love him to stay. He's definitely more than decent at this level.

                                      And then there are the loanees:
                                      Brandon Barker - was only signed as cover when Joel Cooper (who'll be back next season) had to return to N Ireland (and Linfield) for family reasons. Impressive on his day, but doubt he'll be back. Suspect he's on a lot of money at Rangers.
                                      Joe Grayson - hardly played, and when he did he wasn't much cop. Goodbye.
                                      Liam Kelly - showed snatches of quality, but the longer the season went on, the less he played. He's spent a season and a half on loan from Feyenoord now, but doubt we'll see him again.
                                      Elliott Lee - out-of-contract at Luton, so I guess we could sign him if we and he wanted. Another like James Henry with a lot of quality on the ball, but not a great deal of pace. Thus divides the fans. I'd definitely be interested in seeing him here next season again.
                                      Mide Shodipo - I'd love to see him back next season, inconsistent or not, but get the feeling he won't be.
                                      Marcus McGuane - our best attacking player until he got injured, missing the last few months of the season. We've already signed him permanently from Forest for next season, so hopefully he makes a full recovery.
                                      Last edited by Jimski; 22-05-2021, 07:55.


                                        Update to the above. Oxford have confirmed they've offered new contracts to Forde, Mousinho and Ruffels, while letting Hall go. Also offered contracts to young prospects Leon Chambers-Parillon and Kyran Lofthouse.


                                          Sell Henderson because he wears a cap and short sleeves and is therefore untrustworthy. He also comes across as a bit Joe Hart. And no one should come across as a bit Joe Hart.


                                            Originally posted by Jimski View Post
                                            Mide Shodipo - I'd love to see him back next season, inconsistent or not, but get the feeling he won't be.
                                            There've been widely differing reports at QPR about how he's done at Oxford. We do certainly need someone on the right side, but Warburton doesn't seem too impressed, and his inconsistency is certainly part of that. His time with us has also been racked with injury, so it's really hard to judge his overall performance. He'll likely get a shot, but I wouldn't be surprised if he's back with you next season, though not likely as a loan.


                                              Joe Pigott has turned down a new contract at Wimbledon so will leave the club.

                                              He's just scored 20 league goals in a season battling relegation and averaged a goal every three games over his time with The Dons, all of which has been with the side near the foot of the D3 table. At 27, it's fair enough that he tries to take a step up.

                                              I'll be interested to see where he goes and to succeed it will have to be a club where he is the focal point of the attack, though not a target man even though he is 6' 3".

                                              He is going to be very difficult to directly replace.


                                                Not too difficult to make predictions about who is leaving Turf Moor because we can barely muster a full match day squad in the first place. Robbie Brady will likely leave at the end of his contract in order to occupy someone else's treatment table. Aside from that, Matej Vydra may head off in search of first team football though hopefully his long-awaited run in the first team has mollified him a bit. I'd much rather let Ashley Barnes leave, though obviously someone else will have to drive him now. We'll sell one and only one of Tarkowski, Pope or McNeil in that order. Tarkowski is in the last 12 months of his contract so it makes sense to cash in. Popes unlucky missing out on Euro 2020(1) probably means he won't be lured away. McNeil needs a little more seasoning before getting snapped up by Leicester.


                                                  And Clarets have announced that Brady is being released.