In typical Bolton Wanderers fashion, the club took longer than the majority to release their retained list, but they finally did this morning and it revealed that thirteen players will be leaving the club this summer.
Senior stars leaving the club include Matt Mills, Andy Lonergan, Craig Davies, Jermaine Beckford and Keith Andrews.
Club captain Matt Mills leaves the club after perhaps his best campaign in a White shirt, even if it did fade away at the end, for 3/4s of the season he was a rock in defence, a leader and was our top goal scorer for large parts of the season. However, his departure won't come as a surprise to many, as the writing's been on the wall for Mills for quite some time now. He leaves Wanderers having made 94 appearances and scoring seven goals.
Perhaps two slightly more surprising departures, although very understandable, are the duo of Craig Davies and Andy Lonergan. Davies had by far his best season for the club, improving massively from the season prior, as he became a pivotal part of the side with his strength and persistence, and scoring seven goals. Unfortunately, he's been unable to prove his fitness as hamstring injuries have hampered his playing time all season. Davies scored eleven times for the club in 58 games.
Goalkeeper Andy Lonergan also arguably had his best season last year too. Having to fill in for the injured Adam Bogdan for the majority of the season, Lonergan went on a fine run of form that saw him make some laws of physics defying saves. But his form too fizzled out and he never managed to reclaim his place in the side after picking up an injury of his own. He sadly leaves the club after playing 62 times. Lonergan is a player I would have liked to keep at the club, but he deserves first team football.
The news of both Jermaine Beckford and Keith Andrews departing was extremely inevitable, and they'll more than likely join the clubs they've spent the majority of the season on loan at, Preston North End and MK Dons, respectively. Beckford appeared 51 times for the club, scoring eleven goals (he's already scored 15 for Preston) and Andrews played 29 times, scoring on four occasions.
The rest of the list of players who'll be leaving the Macron at the end of June is made up of youngsters: Chris Lester, Georg Illiev, Luke Woodland, Glenn Matthews, Ryan Sellars, James Ball, Carl Kennedy and Kieran Nolan.
We here at Lion of Vienna would like to wish all the departing players the best of luck in all their future endeavours. We'd also specifically like to thank Craig Davies for kindly doing an intro to the #LOVpod for us.
The news isn't as gloomy as it could have been, as Darren Pratley, Adam Bogdan, Eidur Gudjohnsen and Emile Heskey all remain in talks over contract extensions. We can only hope they all sign.
One player who has penned a deal to keep him at the club is young defender Quade Taylor. He made his debut on the last day of the season against Birmingham City, and he impressed, so it's good to see he'll be staying for another year.
Yesterday the club also announced four youngsters have signed professional contracts. The most notable of which is Tom Walker. The young winger played eleven times in the first team last term, scoring a solitary goal against Wigan Athletic. Rob Holding, Channing Campbell-Young and Yvan Wassi have all also turned pro.
Goalkeeper Harry Campbell has also been offered a professional deal, whilst Jaime Thomas, Tyler Garratt and Chris Cvetko have all been offered extensions of their scholarships.