Tam Courts insists top stars Benjamin Siegrist, Jeando Fuchs and Ian Harkes could pen new deals at Dundee United.
United’s Swiss goalkeeper issued a cryptic, “What will be, will be,” statement when asked about talks on a new deal at Tannadice, which Courier Sport understands are underway.
But Courts believes he, Fuchs – and Ian Harkes – may be convinced to stay at United rather than moving on in January or at the end of the season.
United’s head coach said: “Do I think there’s a chance they might stay? Yes, absolutely and I will put Ian Harkes in that category as well.
“We want to develop players to a point where they’re attractive to other clubs, preferably when they’re under contract so we get a return on the investment.
“We want them to feel part of something that will continue to develop and grow so they’re happy playing their football here.
“Tony and the recruitment team are handling the contract situations.
“Tony is in regular communication with the players’ agents and the players directly.
“The performance levels of the players and the way they are training suggests to me they are comfortable.
“So it’s something that will evolve over the weeks and months.”
The evolution of those discussions will inform United’s other January business, which is already under discussion.
And the prospect of adding further “quality” is something Courts is keen on – as long as potential recruits genuinely strengthen United’s squad.
He explained: “We have been having meetings about the squad and what the plans for January will be.
“We will have Marc McNulty returning then as well, which will be like getting a new player into the squad.
“We want to keep on top of the contractual situation in terms of the guys whose contracts will be expiring and also look at what’s out there as well.
“It’s always an ongoing process. We want to give the players help and assistance because we have gone to the well a lot with the same players.
“So if we can add a bit of quality, if it’s out there, then that gives the squad a boost and increases the level of competition.
“But you don’t want to be doing anything unless it does that and it’s what’s best for the group.
“It’s a tricky window but we’re looking forward to it, we want to see if there’s some value out there.
“The players who are not playing at the moment are pushing hard to get in, so come January we will know what we’ve got and what we need.”