Leeds United retained list revealed - Whites release senior pair but issue pre-season invite

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Leeds United have confirmed that first team pair Adam Forshaw and Joel Robles will be released this summer but the door has not been shut entirely on either man.

The Whites have published their retained list for the 2023/24 season, revealing that Forshaw, Robles, Stuart McKinstry and Will Brook will be released when their contracts expire. Both Forshaw and Robles have been invited to pre-season training this summer however and could therefore hypothetically elongate their time with the club by earning a new deal.

Forshaw joined the club from Middlesbrough in January 2018 for a fee north of £2m. He was viewed as an integral part of the side by Marcelo Bielsa, before a serious and complex hip injury took him out of action for almost two full years. He returned to action early on in the 2021/22 campaign and managed 17 starts before fracturing his kneecap in a collision with defender Robin Koch.

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The 2022/23 campaign was another frustrating one, however, with injuries restricting him to just five Premier League starts, three of which came in the relegation run-in as third manager of the season Sam Allardyce attempted to pull off a great escape. Allardyce highlighted Forshaw’s importance, particularly in light of Tyler Adams’ absence following hamstring surgery. Leeds were unable to avoid the drop, however.

Speaking about his future recently he said: “I'd absolutely love to stay here of course, I love it here, my family love it here. You know, I've got some really close friends, players and staff now. So you know, there's nothing more than I'd wish to stay.”

Leeds did retain an option to extend the 31-year-old’s contract to the summer of 2024 but their decision to release him, along with Robles, means a fresh contract would need to be negotiated should the midfielder return for pre-season training and impress sufficiently. If this is the end of Forshaw’s time at Leeds he departs with 91 appearances to his name.

Robles, 32, joined last summer, penning a one-year deal, to provide Illan Meslier with a sterner challenge for the number one spot and ended the season as Allardyce’s number one, with the young Frenchman’s confidence and form issues leading to his benching. The Spaniard departs Leeds having made seven appearances, four of which were top flight fixtures.

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Fellow keeper Brook, a regular on Under-21 matchdays who rarely featured for the youngsters, found himself behind Harry Christy and Dani van den Heuvel in the pecking order and had to content himself on occasion with Under 18s action.

SUMMER RELEASE - Leeds United have confirmed Adam Forshaw and Joel Robles will be released when their contracts expire this summer, but both are welcome to return for pre-season training. Pic: GettySUMMER RELEASE - Leeds United have confirmed Adam Forshaw and Joel Robles will be released when their contracts expire this summer, but both are welcome to return for pre-season training. Pic: Getty
SUMMER RELEASE - Leeds United have confirmed Adam Forshaw and Joel Robles will be released when their contracts expire this summer, but both are welcome to return for pre-season training. Pic: Getty

McKinstry’s exit was reported by the YEP on May 16, after a season on loan with Scottish Premiership side Motherwell. He scored four goals in 24 appearances for his boyhood club. Leeds initially signed the 20-year-old from the Fir Park side in 2019. McKinstry appeared at first with the Under 18s before graduating to become a member of the Under 23 squads and winning promotion to Premier League 2 Division 1 in 2021. The winger was given his senior debut by Marcelo Bielsa in the Carabao Cup in the 2021/22 season.

Leeds have offered scholar Scott Godden a professional contract but confirmed that fellow youngsters Ben Andreucci and Jay Buchan will leave this summer. Andreucci has already sealed a move to Bolton Wanderers to link up with their reserve side.

A club spokesperson said: “Both Adam Forshaw and Joel Robles have been invited back to the club for pre-season training, when the first team return in July. We would like to express our thanks to those players who will leave the club in the coming weeks and wish them well for the future.”