Peterborough United have made their retained list official following the conclusion of their season and if there was any doubt, it has now been confirmed a big summer of change awaits.
Posh’s season ended in dismal circumstances after a historic collapse in their play-off semi-final against Sheffield Wednesday.
It condemned them to another campaign of League One football but after the heartbreak, the focus has now turned to what’s next. United have confirmed their retained list, with a whole host of players set to head for pastures new.
Nathan Thompson and Benjamin Mensah are leaving at the end of their deals, though a new contract has been offered to long-serving wideman Joe Ward. Most significantly though, nine players have been made available for transfer ahead of the summer window.
Jonson Clarke-Harris, Frankie Kent, Josh Knight, Oliver Norburn, Dan Butler, Jeando Fuchs, Ben Thompson, Joe Tomlinson and Christy Pym are all up for sale. There are some long-serving, vital players included in there, confirming that Posh will embark on a huge rebuild in the coming months.
All that remains…
In goal, Will Blackmore will stay and he is expected to be given a first-team chance. Ronnie Edwards is another contracted to the club and not transfer listed but he and Jack Taylor have both outgrown Posh and will likely head for pastures new.
Of the current senior squad, that would leave just Blackmore, Harrison Burrows, Kwame Poku, Ephron Mason-Clark, Joel Randall and Ricky-Jade Jones on the books heading into next season if the transfer listed players all leave.
There needs to be plenty of players signed and it could be that a host of academy talents make the step up to first-team football too. It’s safe to say the squad that starts next season will look very different to the one that ended this one.
While the hierarchy has reiterated that matters are under control, the receivership situation surrounding the stadium means an important summer awaits in terms of finances. Sales of star players will certainly raise funds, while bringing youngsters through the academy and into the senior side will save money on signings too. It will be hoped that a successful conclusion to that saga will come sooner rather than later given the scale of the rebuild that awaits and the business that needs to be done.
A vital few months are ahead of the Posh and it remains to be seen just how this huge overhaul impacts their chances of pushing for promotion again next season. Darren Ferguson will be leading this young Peterborough United group into the new chapter but he could end up being one of the few familiar faces still at the club for the 2023/24 campaign.
Chairman and co-owner Darragh MacAnthony is a figure that divides opinion – like manager Ferguson – but it can’t be doubted that he has led the club through tough times and obscurity before. It will be hoped he, the Posh hierarchy and Fergie can do so again as they start afresh this summer.