Releasing eight players in one day is the “harsh reality” of relegation, Dundee United chairman Stephen Thompson insisted.
United have confirmed the list of those who will leave the club at the end of the season, with talisman John Rankin among them.
Courier Sport also understands all but Sean Dillon, Scott Fraser, Simon Murray, Luis Zwick and Blair Spittal of the players under-contract have been told they can leave if they find another club.
This hasn’t been confirmed by United.
Thompson said, “I have had to explain the harsh realities of relegation to the squad.
“I spoke to them about cost cutting measures. It was not a pleasant thing to have to do, but it was better to do it face to face with them.
“John Rankin was there in his SPFA capacity and was very good about things. He was a great help.”
The United statement added: “Following the club’s relegation from the Ladbrokes Premiership chairman Stephen Thompson met with the entire first team squad today, taking the first steps towards next season and life in the Ladbrokes Championship.
“The under noted out of contract players will not be offered new contracts. Edward Ofere, Callum Morris, Guy Demel, Ryan Dow, John Rankin, Euan Spark, Joe McGovern and Florent Sinama Pongolle will leave the club at the end of the season.”