Dundee have offered deals to 14 of their out-of-contract stars.
Last season’s shining lights Gary Harkins, John Baird and Jim McAlister lead the way, with the offer of new one-year contracts on the table. Headlining those released by the club are Brian Easton, Steve Simonsen and Mark Kerr. Colin Nish, Mark Stewart, Andrew Barrowman, Jamie McCluskey, Graham Webster, Steven Milne, expected to join Arbroath, and forgotten man Neil McGregor have also been let go as boss John Brown revamps his squad ahead of First Division football next season. Bomber has offered deals to Gary Irvine, Matt Lockwood, Ryan Conroy, Nicky Riley, Iain Davidson, Kevin McBride and Carl Finnigan. Also given their chance to shine in the second tier are youngsters Kyle Benedictus, James Thomson, John Gibson and Jamie Reid. Already on long-term deals are Stephen O’Donnell, Martin Boyle, Declan Gallagher and Leighton McIntosh. Celtic loanee Lewis Toshney has returned to his parent club, while Rab Douglas, Alex Baird, Don Cowan and Davide Grassi have already left Dens. Meanwhile, in the wake of the decision not to punish Hearts, Brown is urging fans to back Dundee’s fight to get back to the top flight. The gaffer is desperate for fans to sign up to support his side next season by buying season tickets. The Jambos avoided immediate relegation from the Premier after the SPL decided the club’s financial problems had not breached its rules, crucially, before the end of the season. UBIG, Hearts parent company, last week requested insolvency in a Lithuanian court. That led to the possibility of Hearts being docked 18 points. But following talks, the SPL board came to the conclusion it could not say if insolvency had occurred as defined by its rules. Dundee are not complaining though. They are focused solely on the job in hand, securing promotion back to the SPL. That focus is made all the more urgent, given the fact promotion becomes a much tougher prospect in a year’s time with Rangers more than likely in the second tier. Bomber said: “We want fans to stick by us and help. By doing that we can make sure we hang on to our better players. It could also make money available for more players to potentially come through the doors.” Dundee CEO Scot Gardiner echoed that saying: “We have to continue the good work carried out.”