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Torquay United trio ink new deals but Howe almost certain to leave

By HEGuyH  |  Posted: May 24, 2013

  • AshleyYeoman

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TOM Cruise, Martin Rice and Ashley Yeoman have all agreed deals to remain at Torquay United.

Full back Cruise, goalkeeper Rice and forward Yeoman were announced as the Gulls' latest summer 'signings' on Friday morning.

Defensive duo Aaron Downes and Brian Saah are still in talks with the club.

Manager Alan Knill said: "It is nice to tick off three lads when it comes to new contracts and it adds more numbers to the squad. I also hope others see those sign and think it is time for them to do the same.

"It is waiting game with Downes and Saah. The players have until June 10 to make their decisions and let us know, so you have to be patient.

"In the meantime, we obviously have to cover all bases and if it doesn’t go well, we need to speak with other centre-halves, which is what we’re doing. Like most people, they are keeping their options open."

However, Knill has conceded that his star striker, Rene Howe, will almost certainly leave Plainmoor this summer.

Howe was top scorer for the Gulls last season but the offer of a new contract has been on the table for some time, and Knill has accepted that he will need to find a replacement for the new campaign.

He said: "I think we can now say that Rene is not going to sign with us.

"To be fair, when it came to the end of the season, he more or less made it clear that he wanted to move.

"We had to do the right thing in offering him a deal and the ball was then in Rene’s court, but all the time I’ve been speaking to him, I’ve thought he wouldn’t be coming back and that hasn’t changed.

"Since I got the job, I’ve been looking for a centre-forward because I always felt Rene wouldn’t be signing. Obviously, if he changed his mind, we would welcome him because I've enjoyed working for him.

"I want the best for Rene and if he feels that is away from Plainmoor, I wish him well."

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