Ashbee departs North End

Ashbee: Leaves Deepdale

Preston have released Ian Ashbee after reaching a financial settlement with the midfielder over the remainder of his contract.

The 35-year-old former Hull captain joined North End 12 months ago, but has been restricted to seven starts and four substitute appearances this term due to fitness struggles and has been absent since the November defeat to Bury with a knee problem.

Ashbee is the second experienced figure to leave Deepdale this week after centre-back Clarke Carlisle had his season-long loan from Burnley terminated.

"The lads who've gone have gone for all sorts of different reasons," said manager Graham Westley.

"At this moment in time, I need to have players who I see being a part of the long-term future of the football club.

"Those that I don't see as part of the long-term future for whatever reason - and there's different reasons - I've had good, constructive conversations with and we've moved in our own directions.

"So it's been a positive week with comings and going and I think we'll be a lot more settled with the environment that we've now got."