Rovers axe pair
By Mark Buckingham
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Blackburn have released defensive duo Craig Short and Nils-Eric Johansson.Blackburn Rovers have released defensive duo Craig Short and Nils-Eric Johansson.
Mark Hughes has decided the pair do not figure in his long-term plans at Ewood Park and has opted against offering the duo new contracts.
Short and Johansson would both have been out of contract in the summer and had been hoping for fresh terms with the Premiership club.
But they will now be on the lookout for another team during the close season after being axed by Rovers boss Hughes.
Veteran defender Short has spent six years with Blackburn but ended his career with the club on a sour note by being sent off against Fulham.
He recently intimated he would be able to carry on at Premiership level after previously suggesting the rigours of top-flight football were too much of a strain.
However, the 36-year-old may now have to embark on the twilight of his career in the Football League, with Sheffield United rumoured to be interested.
Swedish stopper Johansson has been with Rovers for almost four years but is not being retained by Hughes.
Johansson admitted only last week that he was unsure of his future and he will now have to wait to discover if reported interest from Leeds United firms up.
Meanwhile, Hughes has handed a new two-year contract to teenage forward Matt Derbyshire, who made his senior debut as a substitute in the 3-1 defeat to Fulham earlier this month.