Shock departures as Jamie Reid and Kalvin Lumbombo Kalala turn down new Torquay United contract

Jamie Reid has left Torquay United Photo: Micah Crook/PPAUK

Jamie Reid has left Torquay United Photo: Micah Crook/PPAUK - Credit: Micah Crook/PPAUK

Leading goalscorer Jamie Reid and winger Kalvin Lumbombo Kalala have both turned down new contract offers at Torquay United and will be leaving Plainmoor.

Seven other players have accepted fresh deals, to go with five who were already under contract.

But former Buckland Athletic, Truro City and Tiverton Town centre-forward Jared Lewington, veteran defender Ryan Dickson and young non-contract defender Josh Baxter have been released.

Brazilian goalkeeper Lucas Covolan, midfielders Armani Little and Jake Andrews, as well as teenage pros Olaf Koszela and Louie Slough, all had contracts in place for the 2020-2021 season.

Goalkeeper Shaun MacDonald, defenders Ben Wynter, Kyle Cameron and Liam Davis, midfielders Matt Buse and Asa Hall, who is also the club's captain, and winger Ben Whitfield have all accepted new deals.

The biggest news is the departure of Reid, 25, who spearheaded the club's National League South Championship last season with 32 goals and had hit another 21 when the current captain was curtailed after 36 matches.

The Torquay-born former Exeter City striker has scored a total of 63 goals in three spells for his hometown club.

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Manager Gary Johnson said: 'The club did everything we could to keep him right to the last minute - it was nothing to do with the offer.

'But he decided with his representative that it was the right time to find pastures new.

'Reidy has done very well for us. I think he wants to find a (EFL) League club, although I don't think there is one set at the moment.

'He has been a Torquay supporter, he loves the club and he has enjoyed the last couple of seasons with us.

'It's a bit precarious out there at the moment, so I hope he and his representative find what they they are looking for.'

Crowd-pleasing French winger Kalala, whom Johnson brought with him from Cheltenham Town early last season, leaves after scoring 13 goals in 68 appearances.

'Kalvin decided quite early that he wouldn't be taking up our offer,' said Johnson.

'The potential in him is unbelievable. But there are things he needs to work on, and I think he could have done that in another year with us - our supporters know what I'm talking about.'

It had already been confirmed that Dickson would be leaving after his extended loan with Truro last season.

Baxter had not featured in the first team and of Lewington, who moved from Tiverton to try and break into full-time football midway through last season, Johnson added: 'I had to make a decision as to whether Jared would be playing regularly in the first team and scoring the goals to get us into the Football League, and I couldn't guarantee him that.

'After we had talked, it was felt that it was best for him to find pastures new and be playing regularly, which is what he needs.'

Read more in Thursday's Torbay Weekly.