TALENTED Morton midfielder Declan McDaid has left manager Allan Moore bemused by his decision to reject a full-time contract offer from the club.
When contacted by Moore, pictured, and offered a deal for next season recently, 17-year-old McDaid informed the Ton boss that he would instead be seeking trials at other clubs.
At age 15, McDaid was the subject of a bid from Celtic and also took a place on the first-team bench at Stirling Albion on the last day of the 2010-11 season. He made his Ton debut in a 5-2 win over Airdrie United at Cappielow last month, replacing Kyle Wilkie in the last minute, and recently scored for Scotland schoolboy under-18s against England.
Moore had planned to have McDaid heavily involved next season and feels the Dunoon teenager might come to regret his decision to refuse a contract with the Cappielow club.
He told the Tele: "I don't know what wee Declan's thinking. I phoned him to offer him a deal and he knocked us back and said he's wanting to go and try his luck elsewhere.
"He said 'I didn't know how to tell you this, gaffer, but I'm not going to sign'.
"I asked him why not and he said he was going to take trials elsewhere. I think he might be away to Partick.
"That's his prerogative, but we were patient enough to wait until he finished school to offer him a deal.
"We waited to offer him a professional contract, and when we did go to offer him it he'd obviously been promised this and that elsewhere by agents.
"And it surprised me with young Declan because he had a foot in the first-team door here. I can't see him having that with other clubs.
"What'll probably happen is that he'll go somewhere else and play in the under-17s or under-20s.
"Here at Morton he would have had a very good chance of playing in the first-team, and that's an opportunity that he might regret rejecting."
Despite his frustration at McDaid's decision to seek a contract elsewhere, he has not completely closed the door on a possible return.
When asked what would happen if the wideman had a change of heart, Moore said: "It would depend on what the situation was with my budget, just like with the rest of my players.
"If they want to go somewhere else, fine.
"But if they come back and say they didn't get anything, I'd have to see what I had left in my budget and then make a decision."