Ex-Morton skipper's agony over exit statement
Published: 9 Jan 2014 16:30
FORMER Morton skipper Mark McLaughlin has expressed his disappointment with the way the club announced his Cappielow departure.
The 38-year-old’s contract was officially cancelled last Friday after previously reaching an agreement with new boss Kenny Shiels that would see him leave to find regular first-team football elsewhere.
However, a news item posted on Ton’s official website on Christmas Eve stated that he had ‘been released with immediate effect’.
Experienced defender McLaughlin was left hurt by the wording of the announcement and insisted he was not dumped by the club and had actually agreed to leave by mutual consent.
The club statement had read: “Regretfully, club captain Mark McLaughlin, whose contract does not expire until May 2014, has also been released with immediate effect.
“McLaughlin has been a major player with the club since joining in 2012. The club thank Mark for his contribution over the years, especially last season where he captained the team through an incredible challenge for the First Division title.”
McLaughlin told the Tele: “The club put something on the website on Christmas Eve.
“I spoke to Gillian [Donaldson] on Friday and told her I was disappointed with the way it had come out. It was on the website saying that I had been released with immediate effect. It was also in the national papers saying Mark McLaughlin and Nacho Novo had been released with immediate effect.
“That has been disappointing, because I wasn’t just released.
“We agreed that I would leave by mutual consent.
“Kenny Shiels said to me that I maybe wasn’t going to play much. That’s fair enough.
“He then told me that Airdrie had come in and asked if they could take me on loan.
“He said Airdrie would pay half my wages and Morton would pay half my wages, but I said, ‘Well, I don’t want to go out on loan’.
“I said that we should come to an agreement for me to leave instead. I’m not greedy. I didn’t say ‘give me all my wages or I’m going to sit on my contract’.
“It’s not the way I am. I just want to play football. So I came to an agreement with the club — a really fair agreement — shook everybody’s hand and wished them all the best.
“The timing of the club’s statement was also disappointing because it only went through recently. I might not have been in with the club but it only went through on Friday.
“I don’t go away with any hard feelings. That’s not the person I am.
“Dumbarton are my employer now and I’m going to do my best for them, but I grew up a Morton supporter and wish them well.”
As a Sons player, McLaughlin is now in direct competition with his former club as the sides scrap it out with the likes of Cowdenbeath and Queen of the South to avoid relegation.
Although his new team’s 2-0 victory on Saturday put them firmly in the driving seat, he isn’t writing Ton off yet.
He added: “We need to keep pushing up the table. Cowdenbeath’s win at Alloa didn’t help us or Morton, but winning on Saturday gave us that wee gap
again. With them losing on Saturday and Cowdenbeath winning, it makes it hard for Morton. But the next time you see Morton there will be more changes.
“Kenny Shiels wants to get his own players there and try and turn the situation around.
“Until it actually is impossible, it’s always possible. It’s not over until it’s over.”
Get more stories from our Morton FC section
powered by Kicktalk online sports radio
21 Apr 2014 11:30 • Jonathan Mitchell
WITH no prior knowledge of the league table, it would have been permissible to assume Morton were the team who were challenging for the Championship title at full-time on Saturday.
21 Apr 2014 11:00 • Jonathan Mitchell
MORTON manager Kenny Shiels hailed his fresh-faced back four after they kept out league leaders Dundee at Cappielow on Saturday.
21 Apr 2014 10:30 • Jonathan Mitchell
DOUGIE Imrie was pleased that his goal helped former club Hamilton take top spot in the Championship — but insisted the real satisfaction was in seeing Morton winning.
19 Apr 2014 12:00 • Jonathan Mitchell
MORTON dented Dundee’s title hopes with a shock 1-0 over the Championship challengers in a top versus bottom clash at Cappielow this afternoon.
19 Apr 2014 08:30 • Jonathan Mitchell
MARK Russell never thought for a second that he would make his professional football breakthrough as a defender – as he hadn’t played anywhere besides up front until two years ago.
18 Apr 2014 13:00 • Russell Steele
WITH Morton’s fate finally sealed last weekend, their miserable 2013-14 season is almost over.
18 Apr 2014 12:00 • Jonathan Mitchell
TRIALIST Ian Vicars saw his chances of winning a contract with Morton dealt a severe blow by an injury suffered in training, the Tele can reveal.
17 Apr 2014 13:30
THE startling progress made by this week’s featured player, 15-year-old midfielder Mitchell Duffy, has already seen him fast-tracked up an age level this term.
17 Apr 2014 13:00 • Jonathan Mitchell
MORTON head of youth Derek Anderson says he was extremely impressed with the standard of player on show at a recent Under-11s trial.
17 Apr 2014 12:00 • Jonathan Mitchell
MORTON boss Kenny Shiels says Joe McKee needs to understand that he makes decisions based on what he believes is best for the team.
17 Apr 2014 11:30 • Jonathan Mitchell
MORTON midfielder Joe McKee has expressed his frustration at a lack of playing time under current manager Kenny Shiels.
16 Apr 2014 12:00
MORTON secured their place in the semi-finals of the Reserve League Cup last night despite a resounding home loss to Queen’s Park.
16 Apr 2014 11:30 • Jonathan Mitchell
HEARTBROKEN Archie Campbell says he has never felt lower than he did when Morton’s relegation from the Championship was finally confirmed on Saturday.
15 Apr 2014 12:30
OH well, after weeks of everyone connected with Morton expecting relegation, it actually came to fruition on Saturday as the players surrendered their status as a Championship team with a whimper.
15 Apr 2014 12:00
ALLOA Athletic manager Barry Smith has backed Morton to rebound from the disappointment of relegation after watching his side condemn to the drop at the weekend.
15 Apr 2014 11:30 • Jonathan Mitchell
DOUGIE Imrie has apologised to Morton fans for the dreadful season which has seen them relegated from the Championship.
14 Apr 2014 12:00 • Jonathan Mitchell
FOUAD Bachirou admitted the way Morton performed against Alloa was an unacceptable way for the club to be relegated.
14 Apr 2014 12:00
DEREK GASTON (5) – After back-to-back clean sheets, Ton No1will be disappointed to have seen that ended by conceding from two simple crosses. Made one great save to deny Ryan McCord late on.
14 Apr 2014 12:00 • Jonathan Mitchell
IT was always a matter of time and came as no surprise to anyone when Morton were officially relegated to League One on Saturday.