CONTRACT: Keeper stays at Brunton Park for another season

Carlisle United Football Club are delighted to confirm that keeper Louis Gray has signed a one-year contract which keeps him at Brunton Park until the end of the 2019/20 campaign.

Gray, 23, returned to Brunton Park in October to provide competition for the number one shirt after Boro stopper Joe Fryer had broken his leg during the home victory over Crewe Alexandra earlier in the season.

This was extended until June during the January transfer window, and he was offered a further deal when the season came to a close last week.

No stranger to United fans, Gray had previously spent three months on loan with the Blues from Everton as cover for Jack Bonham at the end of the 2017/18 season.

Manager Steven Pressley said: “It’s another one that I’m really pleased we’ve done. It gives us a degree of continuity in a key area, particularly when you consider that recruitment is a big job for us this summer, with the number of spaces we need to fill.

“That’s why it’s good and important when you manage to keep a player here who you rate very highly. He certainly fits into that category because he has an excellent attitude and approach to his job.

“The form shown by Adam Collin has limited his chances and all I can do is assess the way he does his business in training and in the reserve games we play. His performances have been first class and I know he could step up and play in the first team at any time, which is an excellent position for a manager to be in.

“You never know the full ability of a goalkeeper until he plays in a team for a long period, because a big part of that job is being able to deal with adversity and set-backs. We know we haven’t been able to assess that yet, but his hunger and desire to play is second to none and he has fully bought into the culture we’re looking to create.

“His signature today gives us a strong and really good keeping department going into the new season. The lads both have excellent characters and they are very much the type of people we want at our club.”

Head of goalkeeping Craig Wight said: “On the back of Adam [Collin] agreeing his new contract it was important that the club had two good keepers and, with Louis agreeing to a new deal, it means we now have an extremely strong goalkeeper group.

“It’s been a tough season for him with him not having an opportunity, but that was only down to the form shown by Adam and not because of a lack of form from Louis.

“This is another important signing for us and again demonstrates the club’s drive and ambition for the season. The team’s foundation is secured with two keepers who could easily be first choice at any other team.

“With Louis, I think we work well together and it’s been a pleasure to help him develop and grow this season. I can’t wait to continue the work we’ve started with both of these players as we look ahead to another exciting season.”

The Welsh born stopper cut his teeth at his hometown club Wrexham and made the move to join the Premier League giants, initially on a short-term deal, in September 2015.

He had a spell on-loan with Colwyn Bay just one month later, and featured for the Toffees in their Checkatrade Trophy games against Notts County and Mansfield Town in the group stages of the competition last season.

He left Goodison Park when his contract drew to a close in June 2017, and was courted by a number of clubs, including Nuneaton Borough, before coming back up north to rejoin the Blues.

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