Eight Freed By United

Last updated : 04 May 2008 By honestman
After a mediocre season, Ayr United have told eight players they are free to go.

Heading for the exit doors are goalkeeper Mark McGeown, Chris Robertson, Craig Pettigrew, David Lowing, David Dunn, Jerome Vareille, Iain Anderson and Gareth Wardlaw. Biggest disappointments' are goalkeeper Mark McGeown and replacing him must be a priority for Ayr United now. Ex Preston North End player, Iain Anderson has been plagued by injury, is set to hang up his boots and retiure.

Many fans will be disappointed at not being given the chance to say 'goodbye' to Jerome Vareille and Gareth Wardlaw who have served the club well over the last couple of seasons.

Conversely, New deals have been offered to fans' favourite Andy McLaren. Neil McGowan, Lloyd Kinnard and Fraser Stewart, are all expected to re-sign this week. Martyn Campbell and Murray Henderson have both re-signed.

Meanwhile, striker Paul McLeod has returned to first division champions Hamilton Accies.

Manager Brian Reid told the club website: "There is no doubt we need a fresh injection of players and myself and Scott MacKenzie are working flat out to do so.

"I am looking at players from all levels and certainly wouldn't rule out anyone."

It is reported that Stirling Albion skipper Chris Aitken has accepted a deal to join Ayr next season. The midfielder is relegated Stirling's top goalscorer this season with 15 goals (8 coming from the penalty spot). The 27 year old Aitken also scored 12 goals last season as Stirling were promoted for a brief stay in the First Division, via the play-offs.

Albion manager Allan Moore is quoted in the paper as saying "The chairman made what I thought was a very good offer but I think the simple truth is that Ayr made him a better one". Chris will be part-time at Ayr as he has a good job outside football.

The Ayrshire Post suggests three players, currently with other clubs, have signed pre-contract deals at Somerset Park, with midfielders Dean Keenan, released this week from Greenock Morton, and Alloa Athletic's Scott Agnew strongly rumoured to be joing Aitken.

The signings of Aitken, Agnew and Keenan suggest that Ryan Stevenson will be on his way in the summer and there are reports that English League One side Hartlepool are interested and even that Stevo has been training with 'The Monkey Hangers' this week.

Paul Weaver, Eddie Forrest, Ryan Stevenson, Alex Williams and Willie Easton are all still under contract.