Doncaster Rovers boss Paul Dickov (pictured) has handed Ben Askins, Lewis Ferguson, Mitchell Lund and Billy Whitehouse their first professional contracts.
The quartet who finish their apprenticeship’s this summer will hope to progress in to the Scot’s first-team thinking as soon as possible and fare better than four of their former youth-team colleagues, Jordan Binns, Evan Finnegan, Josh Meade and Chris Whincop, who were shown the door after failing to make a single first-team appearance between them this term.
For Meade, a boyhood Rovers fan, the news was heart-breaking but not entirely unexpected given his inability to force himself into the club’s first XI.
“All of the team were called in for individual meetings. I was the first of the young lads to go in,” said Meade who spent part of this term on loan at Goole.
“Me and the gaffer [Dickov] had a chat and I was told that my contract wasn’t going to be extended.
“I am the type of kid that when I am told that kind of news, I take it on-board. There’s nothing you can do to change their minds, you just have to get on with it and think about your next step.
“I did go in there hoping for a contract extension because I love the club, they’ve been my team as a kid and I have happy memories there, but under the current manager I got an inkling I wasn’t going to get a deal.
“I just got the feeling I wasn’t one of his [Dickov’s] picks. In the past, I’d got the feeling I was a favourite of Brian Flynn’s and Dean Saunders, but not Dickov’s.
“But that’s football and you have to get on with it. I just can’t wait to get going again now. It’s upto me now to prove Rovers wrong,” Meade added.