Crewe Alexandra: Will Jaaskelainen among six players to sign new deals

Will Jaaskelainen
Will Jaaskelainen played 39 games for Crewe in 2019-20

Crewe goalkeepers Will Jaaskelainen and Dave Richards have both signed new two-year contracts.

Finland Under-21 international Jaaskelainen, 21, son of former Bolton keeper Jussi, signed for Crewe in August 2017 on an initial one-year-deal following his release by Bolton.

Four other players have accepted one-year deals with the promoted League Two runners-up.

Regan Griffiths, 20, and defender Travis Johnson, 19, have both signed.

Tyreece Onyekaa and Nathan Woodthorpe have also penned their first professional contracts.

Richards, 26, has made only 26 appearances since signing from Bristol City in 2015, but for much of the time he has been second choice, behind Ben Garratt, who joined from Burton Albion last October and then Jaaskelainen last season.

Crewe won their place back in League One last week after a four-year absence.

Despite being top when the campaign was suspended in mid-March, they were awarded second placed when the season was finally concluded, on a points-per-game basis.

Hunt and Green released by Crewe

Manager David Artell has also had to make a couple of tough decisions in the wake of the financial pressure caused by the Covid-19 pandemic by letting go two of his veterans.

Midfielder Paul Green, 37, and defender Nicky Hunt, 36, have both been let go, despite each having played a big part in Crewe's promotion campaign.

Artell told BBC Radio Stoke: "Telling them of the decision was a really sad day.

"If I am honest they didn't really deserve it. The two of them have both been a real credit to themselves and this football club.

"They have certainly helped turn around a sinking ship and point it on the right course. Now we are heading in the right direction again and that's in no small part down to those two.

"If you ask any manager would they have a really talented boy or a good character, then they would go for the character first and foremost. Of course, ideally you need a bit of ability and talent but the last thing you want is someone to come in and rock the boat. Those two certainly didn't."

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