Club captain Nicky Devlin has now left the club and is considering several options regarding his next move.
Manager Ian McCall said :” I know fans get angry when they see a player they love leave however in this case after watching Nicky for the last 3 seasons I am sure there is a realisation that Nicky has the ability to play for big clubs at a higher level. Even if we had stayed in the Championship it would have been extremely difficult to keep him. Many clubs have been keeping tabs on him for a long time now, he could easily have gone at the end of last season. He became the clubs youngest every captain at 21 and we couldn’t have asked anymore of him. Nicky has a great affinity for the club so who knows, he may well end up back at Somerset in the future. In the meantime we wish him all the very best for the future.”
Nicky signed for United in July 2014 and in his 3 seasons at the club missed less than a handful of matches and made over 100 appearances.
He was made club captain in May 2015 and led the club to promotion in his first season as captain which culminated in an incredible penalty shoot out victory over Stranraer in front of close to 5000 at Somerset Park.
Nicky started coaching with the Ayr United Football Academy at the end of his first season with the club and in the last two years has coached hundreds of local children between the ages of 3 and 12.
He very quickly became a fans favourite for his performances on the pitch and his attacking style however Nicky was equally as popular off the pitch as he got to know our supporters and made time for them wherever he went.
Nicky was a fantastic ambassador for the club, a young captain who embraced his position with pride and enthusiasm. It was only a matter of time before he had to take the opportunity with a bigger club and leaves with the best wishes of everyone at Ayr United for all his efforts at the club, on and off the field.
Nicky gave a message for the fans before leaving :”Unfortunately the time has come to move on from Ayr United. I’ve had 3 great years at the club and I would like to thank Mark Roberts for giving me the opportunity to come here and of course to The Gaffer for giving me the honour of captaining this fantastic club. I would also like to thank everyone at the academy for all they have done for me as well and to allow me to coach with them for the last two years. We’ve had ups and downs but I will always look back at my time with fond memories. As I have said its a great club that I’m sure will bounce straight back to the Championship next year. Big thank you to all the supporters, you’ve been fantastic with me since I arrived at the club and I will never forget our play off final. Thanks for the memories. Nicky”