Dundalk striker Pat Hoban has revealed that the club have stopped negotiating with him over a new contract.
The club’s all-time leading league goalscorer is one of several high-profile players out of contract at Oriel Park at the end of the year, including club captain Brian Gartland, goalkeeper Gary Rogers, last season’s PFAI Young Player of the Year Jamie McGrath and full back Dean Jarvis.
After midfielder Chris Shields penned a new deal with the Lilywhites in April, it emerged that talks with Hoban had stalled.
Now the league’s top goalscorer has revealed that he currently has no contract offer from Dundalk.
“There’s no contract offer to be honest,” he said after last night’s 1-0 win over Shamrock Rovers in Tallaght Stadium.
“My agent stopped talking to Dundalk a long time ago. You’ll need to ask the person at Dundalk who looks after the contracts what’s happening. I’m just concentrated on playing football and winning games.”
Pressed on the matter, the 27-year-old said money was not the issue. In a week where Andy Boyle returned to the club on a three-and-a-half year deal, Hoban says he wants a long-term contract for security and hinted the ongoing stalemate over negotiating it may be impacting his form.
“It’s not money. It’s security,” he said.
“I want a long term contract and for some reason, I don’t know what’s going on, I’m just not getting it which is unfortunate for everything I’ve achieved at the club and everything that we’ve achieved as people in Dundalk.
“It’s just unfortunate but like I said I just have to concentrate on playing football and keep putting in good performances but it’s not ideal to be honest.”
When asked would he like to be at Dundalk next season, Hoban replied: “100%, definitely.”
On a more positive note, the Loughrea man was delighted to see his side move eight points clear at the top of the SSE Airtricity League Premier Division table courtesy of Sean Gannon’s winner last night.
“It wasn’t a good performance overall and even from myself it wasn’t a good performance but it’s one of those where you just take the win and get out of here.
“They did have one off the line and the shot from Jack Byrne that hit the crossbar but other than that they didn’t really hurt us. They played decent football, which we knew they were going to do, but it was just a bad game overall. We’ll take the three points and move on.
“It’s just a game to forget for us but it puts us eight points clear in the league and you have to take that.”
Hoban said it was now important to build on the result with Waterford FC visiting Oriel Park on Monday followed by a tricky away trip to face Derry City in the Ryan McBride Brandywell Stadium on Friday before the squad can focus on the Champions League meeting with Riga FC.
“You can’t even think of Europe now because we’ve two massive games. We’ve to follow up this win now on Monday. Monday’s game is the most important game now and we have to make sure we back up this great win.
“There was a big sign in the fans tonight and they honestly did think the league was over. I was hearing on all sorts of podcasts that the league was over and Rovers had won the league. I was flabbergasted, I couldn’t believe it. It just shows when you keep the head down and keep working hard, we know how to win leagues.
“Now we’re eight points clear but we have to make sure we keep driving on.”
Hoban also welcomed the return of Andy Boyle to the club.
“Andy is a great player. I played with him in 2013 and 2014 and when I left he got even better and that’s what got him his cap for Ireland and going to Preston. He earned that. Now he’s back and you’ve to grab him with both arms because he’s a quality player and he’s going to fit in very well,” said Hoban.