Find our who will be part of Flemming Pedersen's Development Squad next season
Four young players will be leaving Brentford when their contracts expire at the end of the season. Brentford’s Development Squad played their last match of the Under-21 Professional Development League season last week and four of the squad have been told they will not be offered new contracts. Goalkeeper Nik Tzanev and defenders Daniel O’Shaughnessy, Audrius Laucys and Aaron Greene will leave Brentford at the end of the season. Additionally, the Club has already agreed to cancel the contracts of defender Gradi Milenge and attacker Jermaine Udumaga.
Nik, 19, signed a one-year contract last summer. The New Zealand Under-20 international was Youth Team Player of the Year for the 2014/15 season and turned professional after completing two-year youth development programme and taking his A Levels.
Aaron, 21, will be leaving Brentford after two years. He signed in 2014 after a successful trial and then extended his contract last season. He played three games for Brentford in the Under-21 league this season and had a loan spell at Boston United. The switch was cut short by a knee injury and that has prevented him playing again this term. Aaron will continue his rehabilitation at Brentford until he is fit and able to find a new club.
Audrius, known to most as Adi, signed a one-year professional contract last summer. The 19-year-old Lithuanian youth international was part of the Brentford team which won the Northern Ireland Milk Cup Junior section in 2012.
Daniel, 21, is currently on loan at Danish champions FC Midtyjlland. He will spend the last few months of his Brentford contract in Denmark and will then be free to find another club. The left-sided Finland international joined Brentford on a two-year contract in 2014 after a successful trial. He has played two games for Finland and has been a regular at Under-21 level.
Gradi has already left the Club as a mutual agreement has been reached for the termination of his contract. The 19-year-old defender signed a one-year professional contract last summer after captaining Brentford’s Youth Team for most of last season.
Jermaine will turn 21 in the close season and has also already left the Club. He has played three Sky Bet Championship games for Brentford and made four First Team appearances in total. He also had a loan spell at Wycombe Wanderers. Jermaine joined The Bees in the summer of 2014 and extended his contract last season.
There are 12 players under contract for Brentford’s Development Squad next season. Midfield player Reece Cole and defender Chris Mepham have already signed their first professional contacts after completing their scholarships. Reece got his first taste of First Team action last week when he was named as a substitute against Cardiff City and Milton Keynes Dons while Chris has also been close to the bench in recent weeks.
Defenders Nathan Fox, Emmanuel Onariase and Tom Field are under contract as are midfield players Jan Holldack, James Ferry and Zain Westbrooke. Attackers Courtney Senior, Herson Rodrigues Alves, Seika Jatta and Bradley Clayton also have deals for the 2016/17 season. Youth Team player Kyjuon Marsh-Brown has been offered a two-year contract to be part of the group next year.
Flemming Pedersen, Development Squad Head Coach, said: “When you raise the standards and the demands on the players, some will de-select themselves and they know it. It has been a positive process because the de-selected players have faced reality and started to work even harder. The best example has been Gradi Milenge who started to come in one hour earlier every day to work on his fitness before training. That is what you do if you want to be a professional athlete.
“Unfortunately some players started too late with this but hopefully we can change this in the near future and the work they have done will help them. I wish everyone the best of luck in their new environments on their way to their dreams.”
Rob Rowan, Head of Football Operations, added: “It is the end of that two year cycle for most of the young pros. This is a time where they either become a First Team player or leave the Football Club. Unfortunately for the majority of the squad it is the latter. This means we will see some popular faces leave the club and hopefully find a career in the sport elsewhere. On behalf of everyone at Brentford Football Club, I would like to wish them all the best with their future careers."