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Baggies confirm five departures

PUBLISHED

18:17 16th May 2014

And five loan signings return to parent clubs

ALBION have today confirmed the departures of five players.

Out-of-contract duo Zoltan Gera and Steven Reid have not been offered new deals while the club have decided not to exercise their one-year option on Liam Ridgewell.

The Baggies have also triggered a break clause in Diego Lugano’s contract and decided against taking up their one-year option on Scott Allan.

Albion’s five loan signings – Scott Sinclair (Manchester City), Morgan Amalfitano (Marseille), Matej Vydra (Udinese), Thievy Bifouma (Espanyol) and Goran Popov (Dynamo Kiev) – have also returned to their parent clubs.

Director of Football Administration, Richard Garlick, said: “Zoltan and Steven have been terrific professionals during their many years with us. They have been a real credit to the football club, both on and off the field.

“We know that Zoltan is looking to find another club while Steven, who is keen to carry on playing but is also doing his coaching badges, is considering his options.

“Liam has made a key contribution during the past two-and-a-half years, which we thank him for. He has been a popular member of the dressing room and we wish him well as he looks for a new club.

“I would also like to thank Diego and our five loan signings for their efforts over the past 12 months.

“Scott Allan has found it difficult to break into the first team since arriving two-and-a-half years ago and we wish him well in his future career.”

Gera returned from Fulham in August 2011 for a second Hawthorns spell that has been cruelly marred by injury.

The 35-year-old remains a firm fans’ favourite and will always be remembered for his part in the Baggies 2004/05 ‘Great Escape’ and helping the club clinch the Championship title in 2007/08.

In total, he scored 29 times in 191 appearances, including 50 as a sub.

Reid officially moved to The Hawthorns from Blackburn in July 2010 following a loan spell when he helped the Baggies clinch promotion to the top flight.

A key figure in the dressing room, the 33-year-old right-back made 87 appearances, including 12 as a sub, scoring four times.

Ridgewell joined from Blues towards the end of the 2012 January transfer window and made his debut in the memorable 5-1 win at Wolves. In total, he made 78 appearances, including two as sub, scoring twice. 

Uruguay defender Lugano joined the Baggies on a free transfer from French champions Paris Saint-Germain last summer and made 11 appearances, including two as sub. His single goal was a crucial equaliser in January’s 1-1 draw with Everton.

Amalfitano, who made 30 appearances, including four as sub, will be remembered for his impressive strikes against Sunderland, Manchester United, Norwich and Cardiff this term, while Vydra scored three times from 24 appearances, including 15 as sub.

Thievy made six appearances, including three as sub, scoring twice, while Sinclair made 11 appearances, including five as sub. During two seasons on loan, Popov made 15 starts and three sub appearances.

Allan signed from Dundee United in January 2012 but did not make a senior appearance. He spent last season on loan at Blues, having also had spells at Portsmouth and MK Dons in the previous two years.

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