MICHAEL Appleton has told four youngsters they will not be offered new deals at Oxford United – but says it is a case of ‘wait and see’ with the two highest-profile out-of-contract players.
Miles Welch-Hayes, Robbie Cundy, Jordan Graham and Jonny Giles have been informed their futures are away from the Kassam Stadium, as has goalkeeper Benji Buchel.
Josh Ashby has signed a one-year deal, while the club are expected to trigger a clause in the contract of out-of-favour midfielder Liam Sercombe, before looking to sell him on for a fee.
But there is no news of Chris Maguire and Chey Dunkley, with the U’s head coach saying the club will be taking their time before announcing the duo’s futures.
Appleton believes the clamour for clubs to release a retained list is unnecessary.
“I know fans like to see it, but it is no longer always a black and white decision,” Appleton said.
“That’s true on both sides – players and clubs both weigh up their options carefully these days so it’s hard to get all those things in line immediately after the season ends.”
Appleton has spoken to all the players whose deals expire, but says as to when supporters will be told depends on various factors.
“We had a very positive season and I don’t imagine wholesale changes to the squad,” he said.
“I have talked with everyone and they all know where they stand.
“Some of the youngsters – Robbie Cundy, Jordan Graham, Jonny Giles and Miles Welch-Hayes – have been told they won’t be offered a new deal, while the arrival of Scott Shearer means that Benji Buchel will also be leaving us.
“We thank them all for their efforts and wish them all well.
“Josh Ashby has signed a new one-year deal while he recovers from a knee injury, but with everyone else it is a case of wait and see what develops.”
Appleton has asked for patience from United supporters, and hinted that the futures of players could be determined by new arrivals.
“They know where we stand, but the situation can change very quickly," he added.
“We hope to have one or two new faces in soon, exciting players we think will strengthen us in key positions.
“That obviously changes the picture for the other players and what we can offer them.
“All I would ask is for the fans to be a little patient.
“We are working extremely hard to get the right mix together to try to ensure we have another successful season.”