WREXHAM manager Denis Smith has pleaded for the uncertain future of many of his valiant Dragons squad to be resolved as soon as possible.
As yet only eight members of the current squad are under contract for a further 12 months and Smith has revealed that defender Andy Holt turned down a chance to leave the Racecourse when the club went into administration
The player, signed from Hull City last summer, is one of the contracted band of eight, but the Dragons boss accepts that each of them will be seeking assurances about job security while the club's future remains uncertain.
And with the ownership issue still unresolved, Smith's first task yesterday was to consult the Racecourse administrators.
"We have until May 21 to make written offers to those players who are out of contract this year," he said. "I would like to keep this squad together because they are a good set of lads but we'll have to see how many want to stay. "As for the lads still under contract, they have to be treated with respect as well. They will want some definite answers and promises of what might happen are not good enough.
"I've got to be able to tell them exactly what's going on and what is happening to the football club. We have been relegated to League Two which is probably not where a lot of them would want to work. "I still believe that the club's future will be sorted out in the next few weeks but it's coming to a stage when a lot of difficult issues need to be resolved."
In addition to Holt, Jim Whitley, Dennis Lawrence, Danny Williams, Darren Ferguson, Dean Bennett, Chris Llewellyn and Shaun Pejic all have deals that run until next summer and the Racecourse boss is hoping that Holt's loyalty earlier this season will rub off on them.
"A club came in for Andy soon after we went into administration and we told the lad all about it," added Smith. "He could easily have gone and we would have cashed in but he said he didn't want to leave.
"All the players still under contract have a value, as do the younger lads like Craig Morgan, Mark Jones, Simon Spender and Levi Mackin. And if we get offers for any of them, it's something for myself and the administrators to sort out."
Smith, whose own contract is up for renewal this time round, will also have tough decisions to make concerning the future of veterans Brian Carey and Andy Dibble, both of whom have been injured for much of the current campaign.
Central defender Carey, who turns 37 at the end of this month, has yet to decide whether to continue playing but Dibble, 40 next Sunday, is keen to carry on for at least another 12 months.
"They have been absolutely superb to have around the place," said Smith. "I will certainly have to carefully consider what I can do for them because they have both been mainstays in the dressing room through these difficult times.
"If you look at what's happened to them this season, the question will be whether they have overcome their injuries. Dibbs is fit again at the moment and he works harder than almost anyone in training.
"But I'll have to be guided by the medical advice I'm given as to whether, under normal circumstances, they can get through another season. There's no question I'll be working to a very tight budget and with a small squad so I can't afford to take too many risks."