Bristol Rovers summer plans unveiled as transfer signing ‘excited’

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The Gas’ pre-season schedule and their first-team squad is beginning to take shape.

Grant Ward has expressed his delight after signing a new two-year contract at Bristol Rovers.

The 28-year-old showed his commitment to the Gas by accepting their contract offer. He had been out of contract after initially joining on a six-month deal but after impressing Joey Barton, he has been offered a longer stay.

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Barton described it was a ‘no-brainer’ to secure him for two further seasons. According to BristolLive, there had been speculation about interest in League One, but it was always his intention to remain in Bristol, and the duration of the contract was the only sticking point in the negotiations.

Ward tweeted on Monday: “Delighted to have signed a new deal @Official_BRFC excited to build on from last season.

“Thanks to all the fans for the messages, looking forward to seeing you all soon.”

He made 19 appearances for Rovers after joining from Championship outfit Blackpool. Ward featured in every game and proved his fitness after overcoming a difficult time with injury.

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Ward is the second player to commit to their future to the club after Josh Grant signed a one-year deal. Grant played just 10 minutes last season but has been given a chance to repay the club’s faith after paying for surgery for a long-term injury.

Harry Anderson meanwhile was released, and despite speculation linking him with moves to Portsmouth, Wrexham, and his former club Lincoln City, he is yet to sign for a new team. Anderson could yet return to the Memorial Stadium with an option to train with the club extended to him, but he is free to discuss his next move with other clubs.

Callum MacDonald meanwhile has joined a strong Rovers contingent at Mansfield Town. MacDonald joined on Deadline Day but made just a handful of appearances, but is now hopeful of making an impact with the Stags.

Paul Coutts was released meanwhile, despite talk of him joining the coaching staff. The former Sheffield United midfielder could still return, but a roadblock in him rejoining is that his family is based in Scotland and that committing to another year in Bristol is something that would need to be discussed.

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Away from transfers, the club have announced a pre-season friendly against Swansea City on Tuesday, July 25, and it will be held at the Swansea.com stadium with a kick-off time of 7.00 pm. It is in addition to their first match of pre-season which is scheduled against Melskham Town on Friday 30th June 30th at 7.30pm.

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