Howard set for Barnsley exit

Club confirm midfielder wants to leave Oakwell

Howard: Barnsley exit

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Midfielder Brian Howard could have played his last game for Barnsley.

Howard, who skippered the Tykes during their run to the FA Cup semi-finals last season when they saw off Liverpool and Chelsea, was left out of the squad for their weekend draw with Norwich.

The Oakwell outfit have now confirmed that the popular player has rejected all offers of a new deal with the Championship club, having made his desire to move on known during the summer.

Barnsley are now looking to secure Howard's exit as soon as possible, although the situation is made more complicated with the transfer window now closed until January.

One possible solution would be for the midfielder to leave on loan now, with a permanent deal then completed during the winter transfer window.

Sheffield United have already been linked with Howard's services, although manager Kevin Blackwell remained coy over the rumours at the weekend.

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A statement on the club's official website read: "During the last close season, Brian Howard through his representatives made it clear that after a successful season personally, he felt it was the right time in his career to move on to a new challenge.

"Of course, the club was keen to retain the services of its captain who has been a fans' favourite since his arrival on a free transfer from Swindon.

"The club has been prepared at all times to offer new contract terms to Brian to keep him with the Reds but his representatives have declined that opportunity.

"On Monday September 22, 2008, the board of Barnsley FC met with Brian Howard and his representatives. Patrick Cryne and manager Simon Davey were also in attendance.

"Brian confirmed directly to the parties present that he wished to leave the club and did not wish to discuss a new contract with the Reds.

"As a consequence the board resolved that, in the interests of all parties, Brian Howard would be allowed to leave the club at the earliest opportunity, subject to Barnsley FC receiving compensation."