NEWPORT County manager Justin Edinburgh has challenged defender David Pipe and midfielder Mike Flynn to “prove me wrong,” after telling the duo they will be allowed to leave the club this summer.
As exclusively revealed by Argus Sport yesterday, both players were five appearances away from triggering clauses in their contracts that would have them offered an automatic extension for next season.
However, the duo have been somewhat on the periphery this season and boss Edinburgh informed the players last week that they weren’t going to be kept beyond May.
He asked both players to remove the clause in their deals regarding terms for next season in order to keep them available for selection this term and both have agreed.
However, while praising their professionalism, Edinburgh also made clear he doesn’t expect either player to be complaining or feeling sorry for themselves in one of his frankest interviews to date.
“I believe Pipey has told one or two of the supporters that he isn’t happy and I understand that, but as far as I am concerned, we all have to move on now and get on with our jobs now,” he said.
“I know where the rumours came from to get this story started (Newport fans were speculating the club had told Edinburgh he couldn’t pick a number of first team players) and unfortunately, it’s our own dressing room this time and I don’t expect to hear any more of that.
“I can’t have it and I expect Flynn and Pipe to still play a part for us this season. It’s up to them to prove me wrong if they want to stay.
“But the fact is, we are looking ahead to next season and I’ve had to make tough choices. It’s very similar, the conversation I had with Flynn, to the chat I had with Tony James earlier this season.
“They’ve both been absolutely vital players for us, local boys who helped the club to get promoted, but in terms of what is left in their legs, they are coming towards the end.
“It’s not a nice chat to have, but we have to think about the future.”
Edinburgh insists where Pipe is concerned, it is simply about his personal call as manager.
“This season, Ryan Jackson has really impressed everyone and we are talking to him about extending his deal,” he said.
“I can’t promise Pipey a start and that’s about it really. It’s a football decision and while I appreciate some people won’t agree with me, I am the one who lives and dies by results and I’ve got to think carefully about my squad for next season.
“David was upset, but we need every player in the squad now to be focused on the task in hand.”
Edinburgh is pleased the matter is now resolved.
“Both players have agreed to take the clause out of their contracts so they are very much in my plans and could both start on Saturday if that’s what we decide is best,” he said.
“And the rumours about any other players not being picked are nonsense.
“Tom Naylor isn’t even our player and Danny Crow is already contracted for next season.
“Everyone is available apart from the injured ones, so that is that really.”