Barnsley look set to recruit into double figures this summer as their play-off winning side of 12 months ago continues to crumble away.
Barnsley announced their retained list today but two of the players they have offered new deals to have rejected them and are seeking pastures new.
Midfielder Josh Scowen- who wore the captain’s armband for the final fixture of the season at Newcastle- has rejected fresh terms at Oakwell as has Marley Watkins who had a transfer request rejected in January. Confirming this the club said in a statement:
“Josh Scowen and Marley Watkins have been in discussions regarding new contracts however, following meetings with Club representatives, both players have expressed an interest to explore other options.”
With currently injured skipper Marc Roberts expected to attract interest this summer – and head coach Paul Heckingbottom has already confirmed there could be sales- it is looking increasingly likely that only goalkeeper Adam Davies – who signed a new two year deal in January- winger Adam Hammill – who signed a two year extension last summer and second choice keeper Nick Townsend who has not featured for the club since October 2015 will be left from the matchday squad that defeated Millwall on that glorious day at Wembley.
This is also because unused substitutes from that day Lewin Nyatanga and Aidy White are two of the ten that the club have announced they are to release, along with Callum Evans, Ryan Williams, Matty Templeton, James Carvell, Jake Charles, Jack Cowgill, Omari Patrick and George Proctor. Nyatanga, White and Williams are the most high profile of the cull but none are really surprising considering Nyatanga has spent the entire 2016-2017 at League One Northampton and hasn’t played for Barnsley since December 2015 and both White and Williams have had injury plagued spells at Oakwell, White playing just 32 times in 18 months and Australian Williams even less- appearing just 30 times in almost three years with his biggest contribution being his only goal for the club- an injury time winner at Cardiff in December.
Both White and Watkins have spoke out today to thank the club and supporters with White telling the club’s official website:
I would like to say a massive thanks to everyone involved at Barnsley FC. It has been a privilege to play for such a great club. I have had some fantastic times with two very memorable trips to Wembley which I will always cherish.
It's been a frustrating season for me personally due to injury. I will continue my rehab at the club until I am back fit, and would like to take this opportunity to thank the Physio team for their hard work and effort.
I have nothing but great things to say about Barnsley FC from the manager to the staff, players and fans.
Watkins took to Twitter to say:
To the Barnsley faithful
It’s been an absolute pleasure giving 100% for the club every week. What a journey from bottom of League 1 to the champ in just over a year. Grateful to all the players, the staff and to Hecky. Wish them all the best in the future.
Today I say goodbye to the Reds as a player but I’ll always be a fan. There are no better fans in the country. One of my favourite memories of you is the plant pot on his head song your passion is top drawer and it was a joy to play in front of you.
Thanks for everything #YouReds,
Speaking of there possibly being only three players left from the League One play-offs the side that kicks off in August will even look very different to the one that played LAST WEEKEND as loan players Gethin Jones, Matty James, Callum Elder, Adam Armstrong, Ryan Kent, Saidy Janko and Julio Rodriguez have all departed; only six players who started the game at St James’ Park look set to remain at Oakwell.
Aidy White (Played 32 times from November 2015)
Callum Evans (Played 3 times from April 2016)
Ryan Williams (Played 30 times from October 2014)
Lewin Nyatanga (Played 91 times from July 2013)
Matty Templeton (Played 4 times from July 2015)
James Carvell (Never played for first team)
Jake Charles (Never played for first team)
Jack Cowgill (Played twice from January 2014)
Omari Patrick (Never played for first team) – has since signed for Bradford
George Proctor (Never played for first team)