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Gigg reshuffle gathers pace as Ronnie Jespon gets to grips with Bury squad
RONNIE Jepson was true to his word, releasing development squad midfielder Greg McDermott after promising to get to grips with his squad.
The Shakers caretaker boss has wasted little time in trimming down the club’s crop of first-team players since being handed temporary charge of the side until January.
Club chairman Stewart Day confirmed last Friday that Jepson would be given until the end of the year to stake a claim to the job.
And, after celebrating by guiding Bury to their first win in 10 matches at Wycombe on Saturday, the 50-year-old coach revealed he would spend the week “addressing one or two things in terms of the playing staff”.
His first act was to terminate the contract of 22-year-old former Newcastle midfielder McDermott, who has left Gigg Lane by mutual consent after failing to play a single first-team match for the club since his summer arrival on a free transfer.
It is understood more fringe players could be on their way out of the club on loan before the weekend as Jepson bids to build a tighter first-team unit of 18 to 20 players and give his development squad competitive match practice.
That was the thinking behind Marlon Jackson’s short-term move to Lincoln last week, with players such as Gareth Roberts, Ashley Grimes, Tope Obadeyi and Aiden Chippendale set to follow in his footsteps.
“When you are a young boy, development games are okay, but when you have gone past that 21, 22 mark you have got to man up by playing competitive football,” said Jepson.
"In Marlon’s case, he has to score goals and show he is willing to bust a gut to get back into the team.
“The same goes for the other players not currently training with the first-team squad. I have explained that to them and I have to say that their attitude has been first class.
“The lads on the bench have been brilliant as well, really supportive of the team.
"Those who I hope to loan out know why they are going and that the opportunity is always there for them to return.”
One player going nowhere, however, is loan signing Danny Hylton.
The 24-year-old striker hobbled off against Wycombe with a knee injury, but while Jepson confirmed he would probably not be fit to play against Alan Knill’s Torquay on Saturday he would not be returning to parent club Rotherham.
The Bury caretaker also revealed midfielders Craig Jones (groin) and Marco Navas (hamstring) could be fit to return at the weekend.
Tickets are now on sale for Bury’s first round FA Cup tie against Skrill Premier leaders Cambridge United, which will be played at Gigg Lane a week on Saturday. Adult tickets are £15, concessions £10, under-11s £5 and under-fives free. There are also reduced prices for family tickets.
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