Barnsley will now look to build their squad for the new season following the appointment of Darrell Clarke as head coach, with a deal for Conor Hourihane getting closer.

Hourihane is thought to have been in advanced discussions with the Reds, with a move possible in the next week but not confirmed.

It is thought that the Irishman could sign as a player but also do some coaching as he targets a career in management in the future.

The former Reds captain, who played 135 games and scored 31 goals for the club between 2014 and 2017, has been released by Derby County whom he skippered to promotion out of League One last month.

Meanwhile, Matty Wolfe is the only out-of-contract player who has played a first team league game to be offered a new deal in the retained list released by Barnsley.

The midfielder, who will be 24 next month, has not played since sustaining a serious knee injury in January of last year. He is thought to be near the end of his recovery now and is expected to return for pre-season, although he will be well behind on match fitness.

It is not clear how long the offered contract is but it is thought that the Reds want to give Wolfe – who has been at the club since he was ten and played 33 first team games – the chance to prove his fitness and get back to his best.

The time period in which the Reds can take their option to buy midfielder Conor Grant for the fee agreed in his loan deal is thought to have passed.

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The Irishman, 22, signed in January on loan from League Two MK Dons, with an option to buy. He started just two league games but impressed as a substitute in the play-offs, assisting two goals.

The wording of the club’s retained list, in which sporting director Mladen Sormaz was quoted thanking Grant and the other loan players for their time the club, suggested he would not be returning. But it is understood that the Reds will look at all options in more detail now a new head coach has been appointed.

In terms of recruiting players, the Reds, as usual, have lists of targets and have had preliminary discussions with possible recruits but new signings are likely to start arriving now Darrell Clarke has been brought in.

The likes of Player of the Year Adam Phillips, Luca Connell and Fabio Jalo could attract interest from other clubs but, with them all under contract until at least 2027 including options, the Reds are likely to hold out for significant seven-figure bids.

Barnsley triggered their options for an extra year for back-up goalkeepers Ben Killip as well as homegrown striker Aiden Marsh.

Under 21s players Kieren Flavell, Theo Chapman, Josiah Dyer, Harrison Nejman, Hayden Pickard, Charlie Hickingbottom, Jean Claude Makiessi and Nathan James – have all had options triggered in their contracts for another year or been offered new deals.

Under 18s players offered contracts are Rogan Ravenhill, Leo Farrell, Emmaisa Nzondo, Ziggy Kozluk, and Bayley McCann – the last two being the sons of ex-Reds Rob Kozluk and Grant McCann respectively. Grant McCann revealed on social media that his son has signed his contract.

Aaron Atkinson, Jonathan Bland, Vimal Yoganathan and Adam Hayton had previously signed deals until at least the end of next season.

The players already under contract who have made league appearances are: Josh Benson, Sam Cosgrove, Barry Cotter, Andy Dallas, Mael de Gevigney, Josh Earl, Ben Killip, Conor McCarthy, Corey O’Keeffe, Adam Phillips, Donovan Pines, Oli Shaw, Callum Styles, Max Watters, Kacper Lopata, Kyran Lofthouse, Jack Shepherd, Jon Russell and Luca Connell.