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
10 Mar 2014 12:00 • Jonathan Mitchell
MORTON defender Ben Sampayo’s season looks to be over, according to manager Kenny Shiels.
8 Mar 2014 09:00 • Jonathan Mitchell
DAVID Hopkin would have preferred to see Morton in action today — but he also believes a Saturday off will have its benefits.
7 Mar 2014 13:00
TELE columnist Chris Millar reflects on the crazy weekend headbutt incident which has everyone in football talking — and argues that Newcastle’s shamed boss Alan Pardew might be fortunate to escape with his job intact.
7 Mar 2014 13:00 • Jonathan Mitchell
MORTON assistant manager David Hopkin has expressed his immense pride in his players for running Kilmarnock close in the quarter-finals of the Scottish Youth Cup.
7 Mar 2014 12:00
MORTON manager Kenny Shiels was pleased to see the majority of his first-team squad get 90 minutes under their belt in last night’s Reserve League Cup win over Airdrie.
7 Mar 2014 12:00
A SECOND year Under-17s player, Dylan Stevenson is the side’s skipper and has already made an impression in his time with the club.
7 Mar 2014 11:30 • Jonathan Mitchell
ROWAN Vine scored his first goals for Morton as the reserves ran out 3-2 winners over Airdrie’s second string at the Excelsior Stadium last night.
6 Mar 2014 12:00 • Jonathan Mitchell
MORTON midfielder Fouad Bachirou made his international bow last night, playing the full 90 minutes for the Comoros Islands as they faced Burkina Faso in a friendly.
6 Mar 2014 11:30 • Jonathan Mitchell
MORTON kitman Andy Bryan has rejected a job offer from Stoke City to stay at Cappielow — and says he just couldn’t bring himself to leave the club he has supported since childhood.
5 Mar 2014 13:00
MR Rae, you need to hold your hands up as it’s your fault for this disaster of a season.
5 Mar 2014 12:00 • Jonathan Mitchell
STUART Findlay feels more ready than ever to step up and make an impression with the Scotland Under-21 squad – and he puts it down to his time on loan at Morton.
5 Mar 2014 11:30 • Jonathan Mitchell
FOUAD Bachirou was immensely proud to receive his first ever Comoros Islands call-up and hopes it is only the beginning of a long international career.
4 Mar 2014 13:00
LAST week I wrote that I thought Morton might just get a positive result at Dundee on Saturday — but once again my faith in our local team was simply not justified.
4 Mar 2014 12:00 • Jonathan Mitchell
KENNY Shiels says Tony Wallace still has a part to play in Morton’s season despite being sent out on a one-month loan to Queen’s Park.
4 Mar 2014 11:30 • Jonathan Mitchell
DAVID O’Brien has sat suffering in silence on the sidelines as Morton have struggled at the wrong end of the table this term — and he admits it has been horrible experience.
3 Mar 2014 12:00
ROWAN Vine insisted Morton did not disgrace themselves at Dens Park and could well have departed with all three points on another day.
3 Mar 2014 11:30 • Jonathan Mitchell
MORTON manager Kenny Shiels lamented his side’s lack of cutting edge as they went down to a 2-0 defeat away at league leaders Dundee on Saturday.
3 Mar 2014 11:30 • Jonathan Mitchell
‘EVERY team is capable of beating any other team in the Championship on any given day’ is an oft and widely expressed sentiment.
1 Mar 2014 21:17 • Jonathan Mitchell
MORTON were unable to defy the odds as they went down to a 2-0 defeat away at league leaders Dundee today.