FORMER Newport County AFC captain David Pipe has been released by the club with immediate effect.

A statement released this evening reads: "Newport County AFC and David Pipe have reached a mutual agreement to end the contract between both parties and the player is free to explore other opportunities with immediate effect.

"This has not been an easy decision and it is credit to all parties involved that an amicable decision has been reached in a professional manner.

"Pipey has been an integral part of the club since joining in September 2011, amassing over a century of appearances, and leading the Exiles to Wembley appearances in successive seasons.

This culminated in lifting the Football Conference Play-Off trophy last May and returning the ‘County’ to the Football League.

"The dedicated defender was instrumental in ensuring League football returned to the City of Newport for the first time in 25 years and the proud Welshman was also named in the ‘Conference’ Team of the Year for 2012/13.

County Manager Justin Edinburgh said: "I would like to thank David for all his hard work and effort during our time we have worked together, he has been an excellent pro and I wish him all the very best in the future.

"The club would also like to place on record its gratitude for the services provided to Newport County AFC by David and wish the player all the best with his future ventures and he will always be welcome at the County."

Exiles striker Aaron O'Connor said: “David is a good friend of mine from his Notts County days and I talked to him before joining the club. He’ll be missed."

And Christian Jolley added: “I’m sad to see Pipey go; he's been a big part of our success over the past two years.”