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Options Not Taken on Keane, Roberts and Rowe But Deals Could Still Be Offered
Monday, 18th May 2020 12:13

Town have announced they are not taking the one-year options on Will Keane, Jordan Roberts and Danny Rowe’s contracts but with the door having been left open to possible future deals as football’s financial situation becomes clearer.

As reported on Friday, the Blues had until the third weekend in May to take up the one-year options on out-of-contract players' deals.

“With so much uncertainty over the game and the financial situation, it’s not feasible for the club to take up the options on the players at the moment,” general manager football operations Lee O’Neill told the club site.

“The door is certainly not closed though and it’s a situation that we will look at again when the football world becomes a bit clearer.”

Striker Keane joined the Blues on a permanent basis last summer following his release by Hull City having spent the second half of 2018/19 on loan at Portman Road.

The 27-year-old striker has made 19 starts and 10 sub appearances during 2019/20, scoring six times. Overall, including his loan spell, Keane has made 28 starts and 13 appearances from the bench for Town, scoring nine times.

If the former Manchester United trainee isn't offered terms later on down the line by the Blues a move to the MLS may appeal with ex-Everton striker and current Minnesota United head coach Adrian Heath his father-in-law.

Winger Rowe was signed from Macclesfield in January 2017 but has made only 14 starts and 15 sub appearances, scoring once for Town. While with the Blues he has spent two spells out on loan at Lincoln.

Forward Roberts, 26, appears the least likely of the three to be offered further terms later on down the line having recently returned from a loan spell at Gillingham - after also had a stint with Lincoln last season - and having played just a minute of League One football for Town during 2019/20.

In total, Roberts, who signed on a free transfer after leaving Crawley in the summer of 2018, has made 10 starts and seven sub appearances for the Blues, scoring three Trophy goals.

Previously the Blues took up options to keep youngsters Andre Dozzell, Armando Dobra, Brett McGavin and Harry Wright for a further season.

Dobra, 19, has all but agreed a new three-year deal with the option for a further season, while talks with Dozzell, 21, have been ongoing since last summer and discussions with McGavin, 20, are also under way.

Photos: TWTD

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FifeITFC added 12:35 - May 18
I don't have a problem with this, sensible and correct decision (assuming replacements will be forthcoming - especially as Keane would normally be a part of a matchday squad).

HighgateBlue added 12:41 - May 18
This may well be a relatively sensible negotiating tactic with one or more of these players. It may be that the wage figure in the option is higher than the club think would now be payable in the open market. So renegotiation seems more sensible than triggering the option.

bournemouthblue added 12:44 - May 18
Keane is an infuriating player, he clearly has some technical ability but he isn't a targetman

He desperately needs a run of games whilst staying fit. He may come good in the future, if he can ever stay fit long enough but he may fit other clubs better than us. The MLS could be a good move for him.

Danny Rowe is the most disappointing one because he was starting to look promising before injury. He again needs a run of staying fit, again this may not be for us sadly.

I don't mind these players going, as long as we have quality replacements.

We need a big number 9 and a quality winger. Whether a Post-Corona football world will allow investment, remains to be seen?

rugbytomc added 13:22 - May 18
Sensible moves for me. Roberts off the books even on a low wage frees up wage money for a better player or different position. Same with Rowe who I've just not been impressed with (likes to go forward but not backwards). Keane like others have said is decent - he just doesn't fit. If Norwood and Jackson are our main strikers, I don't think he offers as much as them or anything different so best to free up those wages too.

Don't expect replacements though folks, unless we sell and sell big, we won't be spending any money so will be on the look out for the odd free or loan

midastouch added 13:26 - May 18
I can't see Rowe being on a bumper contract, therefore, I would of given him another year. He seemed to do well on loan at Lincoln. He always performed well in our U23s and he started the season well enough in the first team. We were top of the league when he was starting regularly. I'm not saying his injury was anything like as damaging as that to KVY (in terms of significance to our season) but I think I'd give him one more year to see if he could prove / establish himself. It wouldn't cost the earth. He has a lot of pace which could make him a useful asset. I think in terms of money it would be a fairly low risk contract offer to give him an extra year. I know the door isn't totally shut on these three but another team might be tempted to pick them up for cheap and they will obviously be interested in any potential offers now. Keane does have quality (he has a lovely first touch for example) but he doesn't score enough goals. Roberts has never really had that much of a chance, again he lacks goals but he might of been useful for cover or to try in another position (perhaps on the wing or supporting striker).
Edwards and Skuse haven't really set the world alight either. I hear the argument about Skuse doing the unsung tidy up and keep it simple job. I'm not sure what stats are kept in League One, I'd be interested to know how his stats for interceptions etc. compare to similar players in this league. Edwards could be a threat in a more attacking role. But he does seem to blow very hot and cold. More cold of late I'd say but he hasn't been playing in his ideal position.
To be honest I wouldn't of lost sleep about losing any of these five, I'd rather they make way for the young guns. I don't think any of them have been performing to their full potential for a while now. However, if you could get any of them playing near their best they would be worth having. None of them can come to the negotiating table with a position of strength given the current climate in football and given their recent performance levels and injury problems (for more than 1 of the 5).

Steve_ITFC_Sweden added 13:30 - May 18
I don't have a problem with this. Sensible deck clearing. Need a big, bruising c-forward unless a fit Norwood turns up.

ITFCsince73 added 13:53 - May 18
I won’t be surprised if we resign at least 1.

madasbadgers added 14:24 - May 18
Regardless of what you think of these 3, leaves us incredibly light for forward cover. Norwood and Jackson now our only recognised senior forwards, hate to say it but how far have we fallen. dobra, I suspect, will feature more regularly, but forward options are absolute bare bones atm. I watch a lot of ITFC u23 and youth football and there isn’t an answer there yet, possibly Simpson in time. Maybe Folami and Morris can step up but it’s a big ask.

runningout added 15:59 - May 18
attempt to sign Anderson from Lincoln. He’s the reason Rowe didn’t play a lot when on loan there. Decent. Rowe Keane and Roberts seemed very lacklustre and probably suited and would do well at other clubs

Bergholt_Blue added 16:08 - May 18
I'm not bothered about Keane but think we should keep Rowe and Roberts

shortmarine1969 added 16:33 - May 18
madasbadgers - Sears

therein61 added 16:34 - May 18
No surprise re Roberts as he appears not to be Lambos cup of tea(but he can certainly unsettle a defence) i think Rowe has something to offer also Keane(what is it with us signing injury plagued players) if he could only stay fit.

Terry_Nutkins added 17:04 - May 18
Not surprising this. Suspect Keane was mon a.good wage. Of the three i would like to get him on a reduced wage. Think he will only get better now injuries are behind him and he would benefit from having Kane VY back in team..

braveblue added 17:34 - May 18
Would keep Rowe. Speaking to Dozzell since last summer!! What a club.

TractorRoyNo1 added 18:40 - May 18
All 3 of them would struggle to score against Stowmarket, ffs clear out the dead wood and play our own boys.

madasbadgers added 19:02 - May 18
Shortmarine - completely slipped my mind !!!! Probably says more about my ageing memory than Sears goal scoring prowess..........then again !!!!

jas0999 added 20:06 - May 18
Really wouldn’t bother offering any of these three reduced deals. None are remotely good enough.

Linkboy13 added 20:10 - May 18
Whole heartily agree with this decision there's a reason we look such a poor side in what is a very mediocre league. These players have just not been consistent enough although they are not the only ones. The squad needs to be smaller but with better quality.

brian_a_mul added 23:31 - May 18
Jack L, Dobra and Bish will all be fighting for first team next season. They can play wide positions so its good for the youth players these guys are moving on. Agree we need a striker to compete with Nors & Jackson. Eoin Doyle is free from Bradford City, top L2 scorer and highly experienced and consistant.

ThaiBlue added 05:41 - May 19
Dont think they will be missed never set the place on fire if the season does finish hopefully more deadwood will be let go.

have_a_word_with_him added 23:45 - May 20
Can't believe anyone would keep these chumps on, they've done absolutely nothing to improve our current position, and taking up valuable salary space. Good luck but goodbye.

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