Philippe Clement has dropped a hint that Kemar Roofe, John Lundstram, Borna Barisic, Ryan Jack, and Leon Balogun, as the five significant contracted players whose deals expire this summer, are playing for their Ibrox futures, but that the decision on them won’t be entirely up to him.
Speaking at his pre-Dons press conference the manager was asked about the state of current contracts and renewals, and while joking that his wife is glad he isn’t the one paying the contracts personally, nevertheless he will offer his football opinion to the board and they will be the ones who decide who stays and who goes.
So, basically, Clement will report over the rest of the season to the payroll about who he would like to keep, and who he is happy to let go, and based on that the board will make the calls on who to offer the deals to.
It will be, as recruitment is, a team decision, left to people above the manager, and he will advise but ultimately go with their decisions.
As for playing for their futures, he explained that part of his reports will be based on how they play, how good they have been for him, and if he wants to keep player X or player Y.
In Ibrox Noise’s humble view, based on Clement’s philosophies and player form, Roofe has absolutely no chance of getting a new deal, with Clement surely running out of patience with him.
Sadly for Ryan Jack, we’d imagine the very best he’d get is a pay as you play deal, or if he’s megalucky, a deal 50% lower than the already modest one he’s currently on (said to be around £8K a week) because of how little he’s available.
But Lunny, Barisic and Balogun probably stand better chances.
Lunny has been excellent, and the board and he are working on that deal – but they’ll need to pay what he’s worth, and Clement will only offer his football opinion on the boy.
Barisic we now suspect will not be offered a new deal – Clement is trying to keep quality in the team, and Barisic hasn’t been a shining performer. The player himself is also likely to want a new challenge anyway and the board may look to the Jefte or other LBs to deputise new number one Ridvan Yilmaz.
Finally there’s Balogun – deeply unfortunate with his all-new injury, that may affect the board’s stance, but we’d imagine from a football point of view Clement will very much want to hold onto the big Nigerian.
But ultimately the system is for Clement to offer his input to the board, and they make the final call.
NB: Jon McLaughlin is also out of contract but we suspect there’s more of a chance of Sima, Danilo, Balogun, Roofe and Davies in the starting XI v Aberdeen than him being offered anything.