Foxes start player cull

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LEICESTER CITY are preparing for their return to The Premiership by releasing ten players and offering new contracts to six more, including strike duo Paul Dickov and Brian Deane.

Experienced pair Billy McKinlay and Gerry Taggart have also been offered fresh deals along with youngsters Matthew Heath and Tommy Wright.

Foxes boss Micky Adams concedes the sextet will not be guaranteed the same salary as they have been earning, and accepts they may wish to look elsewhere.

"The players that I have made offers to who where here last season know that I want them to stay," Adams told the club's official website. "What I can't guarantee them is the wages they were earning last season because that is not manageable at this football club anymore.

"They understand that, but we run the risk of losing players because they are now free transfers, Bosmans if you like, so that's always the risk you run. We hope that we can keep them by making an offer.

"They can go away and tout around what we are offering them but they've all promised that, whatever happens, if they do get offers from other clubs, they will come back to me and give me the opportunity to say what we'll do about it."

Among the ten players who will be leaving The Walkers Stadium on free transfers is Matthew Jones, who was a £3.25 million signing just two years ago.

The Welsh international still has two years to run on his deal with The Foxes and the former Leeds man admits he is a victim of the financial situation afflicting football clubs.

He said: "I've never been allowed to show what I can do. I didn't ask to be put on such ridiculously big wages.

"I'm a victim of the finances in football and it's shocking that I've gone from a £3.25 million player to a free transfer in just a little over two years."

Also being offloaded are Stefan Oakes, Michael Price, Martin Reeves, Jon Stevenson, Nicky Summerbee, Jon Ashton, Junior Lewis, Leon McSweeney and Simon Royce.

Tim Flowers and Darren Eadie are also out of contract but that duo have announced their respective retirements from football.