Aberdeen have confirmed that veteran defender Andy Considine will leave the club at the end of the season – but have said that they are unhappy that confidential news about his departure was leaked to the media.
Considine, who has spent his whole career at the Pittodrie club, is fit again after missing the majority of the season with a cruciate ligament injury but is reaching the end of his existing contract.
News emerged on Tuesday that the 35-year-old defender would not be signing an extension and will leave Aberdeen in the summer.
Aberdeen have now published a statement admitting that the club stalwart is set to leave but also quoted manager Jim Goodwin giving details of contract talks and suggesting that someone on the player’s side must have leaked the story to the media.
“I feel compelled to let our supporters know the facts after my meeting with Andy was leaked which I feel has thrown myself and the club under the bus,” Goodwin said.
“On 10th February the club offered Andy a new one-year contract, rewarding him with a six-figure guaranteed deal, and furthermore offered him the opportunity of a pathway into coaching with our Youth Academy, where the club would continue to invest in his future including his coaching badges.
“Andy’s agent on 23rd March sent in a counter-offer which was over 50% more than our offer in guaranteed wages, and for a two-year contract.
“During my confidential talks with Andy we discussed the parties being too far apart financially and the reality is that I cannot guarantee him playing time next season. Ultimately, and understandably Andy wants to play.
“We were to meet again on Thursday to agree a joint statement on Andy moving on after a sterling career and service to Aberdeen. Unfortunately, this discussion was leaked, but not by the club, and shouldn’t have been in the public domain until it was agreed by both parties. I would prefer to handle these sensitive discussions in-house and not have them played out in the media but feel it is important to now provide an insight into the situation.
“I have to make these difficult decisions and take the emotion out of it. This is entirely a football decision and as manager of this club it is my job to ensure we have a dynamic squad fully equipped for the challenges of the new season.
“It goes without saying that everyone at the club thanks Andy for all his efforts over many, many years at Pittodrie and we wish him all the very best for the future when he does leave.
“The focus now has to only be about trying to win the game against Ross County on Saturday.”
Considine came through Aberdeen’s youth system and made his debut for the club in 2003. In the time since he has made over 400 appearances for the team and was part of the League Cup winning side of 2014.
He gained international honours in 2020, earning three Scotland caps, and has played in 19 consecutive top flight league seasons.