Josh Meekings has revealed he was “open to staying” at Dundee after the defender left the club yesterday having failed to agree a new deal.
Meekings’ contract was up at the end of June after previously agreeing a one-month extension amid the uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic.
The 27-year-old centre-half, who joined the club from Inverness in August 2017, was unable to negotiate a new agreement and left the Dark Blues with immediate effect.
Tele Sport understands Meekings was offered the same terms as Paul McGowan, who signed a new deal until 2021 at 50% wages, later rising to 75%.
Talks broke down, however, with Meekings now seeking pastures new.
In a post on his Instagram account, former club captain ‘Meeks’ sent out an emotional message to the people he had worked with in his time at Dens Park.
He said: “I would like to go on record to express my thanks to all at Dundee FC and wish them well moving forward.
“I will always have fond memories of my time here, in particular being handed the responsibility to captain the side, which of course was an honour.
“I am grateful to Neil McCann, who allowed me the opportunity to join the club, and can’t thank physio Gerry Docherty for his unbelievable help along the way, being a great support and friend.
“To Lorraine, the kit woman, who works tirelessly in the background, thank you very much for everything you’ve done for me. What a woman.
“To the players and staff I’ve worked alongside during my time, it’s been a pleasure.”
Meekings continued: “I’ve thoroughly enjoyed most of my time at the club and wish that the ending could have been different and we could have played out the season to see what happened.
“However, having been open to staying, unfortunately, after having discussions with the club over the weekend, it became clear that they were not in a position to retain me for the 2020/21 season.
“I understand the circumstances and the financial constraints that the club are facing, and wish everybody all the best for the coming season.
“We remain on good terms and the decision to move on has been an amicable one. I enjoyed playing under Jazz and I’m sorry that we will not get the opportunity to keep working together.
“Lastly, thank you to all the fans for your support and good luck!”
Meekings made 53 appearances in three seasons on Tayside, with the last two as skipper.
The news of the Englishman’s departures comes on the back of the Dee last week asking players to take wage cuts of up to 30% as they continue to feel the pinch of the Covid-19 shutdown.
The club expect to hear back from the squad this week after making the request and remain positive about the outcome.
No 2 Jimmy Nicholl and sport scientist Cammy McDermid have already left the club as they attempt to cut costs.
Elsewhere, season tickets are back on sale, with the Dark Blues reporting early signs suggest uptake is greatly improved after the initial failed launch.