Friday, 14 May 2010
The season's done and the party's over and while some are invited to the after party (and then the hotel lobby), others have been given a doggy bag and told 'thanks but no thanks' as Paul Tisdale sets about rebuilding his squad after staying up. Which, chiefly, at this stage, comes down to who to keep and who to chuck.
And now we know. Tisdale's retained list is here.
The big news is that Barry Corr is to be released after just one season with the Grecians. HaL's regular ten readers will know what we're not Bazza's biggest fan after his efforts to pick up nearly as many red cards as goals. Even so, this has come of somewhat as a surprise.
Corr, on his day, probably was our most talented striker. But equally he could be poor and anonymous and needed a run of games to get into the groove. And once he got a run of games, he'd invariably kick somebody and get sent off.
Yes, he could score goals but we'll never know how many as he's missed 12 games through suspension this season and lost his place to loanee Ryan Taylor. That is simply not good enough. And while he put himself about a bit in the final games, watching him fluff his lines on more than one occasion in front of goal in the final game against Huddersfield was the final straw.
Bye Barry. Somewhere in you there's a good player, we just never saw it. And please don't hit me.
More welcome is the news that Richard Logan's been offered a new contract. Logie may have played less than Three Reds but he's a great impact player and clearly loves the club.
Perhaps his motivation isn't as high as it is, but in terms of sheer ability he's the most talented finisher and is loved by the crowd. HaL loves Logie and we're glad he's here for another year. He's good enough and deserves it.
Other than that there's no huge surprises on the list. Alex Russell is the other big name to go, but he's about 87 and coming to the end of his career.
There's no doubt Russell was a hugely talented player but age and injuries have taken their toll on him this season and while he was better than a lot of fans gave him credit for and did a good job at temporarily plugging the Matt Gill hole in midfield, over the season he was one of City's poorer performers this season.
So, bye Alex and thanks for that wonderful free kick at Elland Road. You'll still be an asset to the right team, probably in the Conference. Good luck.
Neil Saunders, Manny Panther and Joe Burnell are all on their way as well, which isn't surprising seeing as we're overstocked in the centre of the park.
Nelly never really fulfilled his potential and was unlucky he picked up a serious knee injury just before his debut, otherwise I've no doubt he would have not only started but become a key member of our midfield.
As it was, he slipped down the pecking order and was in and out of the side. Occasionally scoring wonder goals wasn't enough to save him and, again, he'll be a useful player if a Conference side wants to take a punt on him.
A shame to see Manny go as well, not least because we can't sing "We've got ten men and a Panther" any more. Big and strong, but with a powerful first touch, he was shipped out to Morcambe on loan this season, where Sol Campbell broke his foot.
In honesty, Panther clearly didn't see eye to eye with Tis and the writing was on the wall from that moment on. Again, we occasionally missed his muscle in the centre of the park but he never properly established himself. Bit of a shame, but you can't look back.
As for Burnell, he must have made about half a dozen appearances without ever registering an impression. Essentially a less good version of Bertie Cozic. Some fans probably won't even notice he's gone.
Finally, Craig McAllister is the last of the released players today. Again, no huge surprises there. Tis didn't seem to rate him this season and while he was a great impact player for us last season and looked the business, he's not impressed with loan spells at Barnet or Rotherham.
Like others, there's definitely a talent in there and he's a very decent front man even if he hasn't got 90 minutes in the tank. The Conference probably beckons and he could definitely do a job for the right side.
Ryan Taylor and Stuart Fleetwood have also been sent back to their clubs. I'll post thoughts on those later, but Taylor I wouldn't be averse to seeing back at the park, but Charlton can happily have Fleetwood back.
Steve Tully's got a new deal, which is excellent. The right-back's ben one of our top performers this season and has proved a lot of critics, who thought he wasn't up to League One football, wrong.
Scott Goldborne and Bertie Cozic have been offered new contracts, but not signed. Bertie is Bertie and we love him for being Bertie. Yes, he's limited, but he's also a great battler to have on the pitch and will come cheap. And he owns a crepe house.
Goldborne has been quality this season and we should move the pitch (oh, wait, we are) to keep him. Whether the player himself wants to stay is another matter.
Finally, Marcus Stewart and Rob Edwards will have their futures decided at a later date. They're both on coaching contracts but the playing position is unclear and they have a combined age of 253.
Joe Heath's also signed a deal with us. I haven't seen him play but he's rated quite highly.
Most interestingly, though, George Friend has been released by Wolves. If there's one man I'd like to see back at the park, it's that man. Sign him up, Tis!