CLYDEBANK boss Gordon Moffat has paid tribute to the club's departing players as he looks to shape his squad for next season.

Eight players will be leaving Holm Park upon the end of their contracts, including the likes of Jamie Donnelly and Joe Slattery.

The duo have been reliable players in Bankies jerseys, notching up 174 appearances between them, and playing in some of the clubs biggest games in their recent history.

Connor Higgins, Calum McEwan, Larry McMahon and Adam Smith have not been offered new deals whilst Connor Greene was invited back to pre-season training but opted to agree terms with another club and Creag Little turned down a new offer.

Moff admits the annual contract talks is a time of the year he dreads as he acknowledged the efforts of all of his departing players.

Speaking to the Post, he said: “It’s definitely the worst time of year as a manager to tell guys they are moving on and this year we’ve had eight move on so it’s a decent turnover.

“We’re grateful to all of the guys for their contributions but there’s a couple of guys in there who have been with me for few years which is always difficult. You build a relationship with these guys as well as friends.

“Jamie has been my number one goalkeeper for my whole managerial career up until this season when Kieran [Hughes] came in and gave him stiff competition.

“It become apparent towards the end of the season that Jamie got a new job and he had to do what is right for him and his family. It meant his ability to train is very limited as well as his Saturday afternoons.

“It was a natural decision from him to step away and I had to reluctantly accept so it’s a sad time. He is a brilliant goalkeeper but a huge character as well so he’ll be really missed.

“I’ve been with Joe at three clubs so I’ve got a really strong relationship and we play a lot of golf outside football.

“We had an honest chat and he had some frustrations with his fitness.

“When he was fit and firing, he was one of our best players but he was going five or six games then picking up a niggle and missing four weeks.

“With the competitiveness of the squad it’s really hard to get back in and that wee cycle was a frustration.

“He feels he will go somewhere he can get that gametime when he is fit so I understood it but it was another reluctant acceptance.”

Whilst some clubs are yet to tie up their 2023/24 campaigns – Darvel and Arthurlie will close off the season in the Scottish Junior Cup final this weekend – Moff is already looking at getting back to action in the next fortnight.

In the meantime, he and his staff remain hard at work to recruit for next season as well as the logistics of organising sessions and friendlies.

He added: “It’s a well-deserved rest for the players at the moment but it’s been really busy for me and the staff – ever since the end of the season it’s been pretty much everyday we have been tying up loose ends with the current squad or speaking to new players.

“It’s a busy time and there’s a lot going on but it’s been good so far.

“We’ll be back in for pre-season on June 13 and have our first friendly towards the end of June.

“We’ll have six or seven games against a mix of opposition with the likes of Highland League and South of Scotland League and everywhere in between.”