Chesterfield: Wait goes on for Jimmy Ryan contract news

Jimmy Ryan

Jimmy Ryan

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Spireites fans are still waiting to hear if manager Dean Saunders has made any progress in trying to keep key midfielder Jimmy Ryan at the club.

The former Scunthorpe United engine-roomer was offered a new deal at the start of the year but he has not yet signed it as he and his agent consider other options.

Undoubtedly his former boss Paul Cook will be keeping a close eye on the situation, though whether the player fancies a drop back into League Two and a major geographical move remains to be seen.

Ryan has been a nailed on starter in his two years at the Proact Stadium but the gap between club offer and player demands was deemed to be too great to close during the regular season; Saunders may place a different value on the player as he seeks the ingredients to enable Spireites to maintain a challenge at the top end of League One.

The bidding war for left-sider Sam Clucas has quietened down. Bids from fellow League One sides Wigan Athletic and Scunthorpe have been repelled by Spireites.

Should Clucas move on it would seem inconceivable that he’d stay in tier three and with Championship club Reading believed to be a potential suitor, the ex-Mansfield Town man will no doubt want to hear what they have to offer should they make a formal approach.

Raider Gary Roberts, who’s reached the play-offs or been promoted in each of the last six seasons, is another target for many.

Portsmouth and Bury lead the race for the man who’s been Spireites’ talisman during his two years at the club.

His hamstring has been the only thing to keep him out of the first eleven and that caused a few problems, so Saunders will be calculating the risks of similar injuries curtailing appearances in what would be his final contracted year.

The 31-year-old missed a dozen league games in 2014-15 due to niggling hamstring issues having missed just six, three of those due to suspension, in his first campaign with the club. Roberts has been the key to unlocking many defences in his two terrific years with Spireites, whose playing style has frequently been based around his considerable abilities.

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