Jan 23 2013 By Andrew Weston
Motherwell right-back Tom Hateley admits his representatives have yet to hold talks with the club over a new contract —but he is unconcerned as he focuses all his efforts on helping the Steelmen qualify for Europe.
The 23-year-old is one of several first-teams stars out of contract this summer and he feels the next couple of months could be crucial in determining the future make-up of the squad.
Star goalkeeper Darren Randolph, Chris Humphrey, Nicky Law, Michael Higdon, Simon Ramsden and Omar Daley are all free to leave in the summer along with Hateley who joined Motherwell in 2009.
“I don’t have a clue what is going on — and I have not really thought about it,” he said this week. “My dad and my agent look after that sort of stuff. I don’t want to know anything about that until something is in front of me.
“I have always said, as long as I am playing games, I am happy. Be what may, come the end of the season, if the club want to speak to me, they speak to me.
“I am just trying to enjoy my football and want to keep playing and finish as high up that table as we can.”
He continued: “There are quite a lot of boys out of contract at the moment. We will see what happens and it should be an interesting couple of months.
“Everyone will have different opinions on what they want to do and where they want their career to go. Hopefully the next few months will clear things up. We will just enjoy our football and see where it takes us.”
With Jamie Murphy having left to join Sheffield United this month, Hateley fears the forward may not be the only one to leave during the transfer window but expressed his wish to see the squad remain intact as they target a top three SPL finish and European football next term.
The former Reading player said: “The likes of Henrik (Ojamaa) and others are getting attention at the moment and it would be nice to keep hold of them.
"But in football, if they do get taken by another club, it is a good opportunity for them and their career. You would wish them well if it did
happen like that. It is part and parcel of football but I hope we don’t lose any more players.”
Meanwhile, Hateley was delighted to claim all three points on Sunday as the Steelmen held on for a 3-2 victory at Fir Park despite a late St Johnstone fightback.
Hateley admits the past fortnight felt like a lifetime as he was left to chew over his missed penalty at 0-0 against Celtic on January 2 — a game the league leaders eventually won 1-0.
Sunday’s hard-earned victory puts Motherwell level on points with second placed Inverness and Hateley added: “I am glad we managed to get back out there and play and thankfully get a result. It had been a long couple of weeks, especially for myself after the Celtic game.
“It felt like a couple of months since we last played and it (the penalty miss) sticks in your mind.
“We ground out the result in the end, to be honest, and it would have been a massive blow if we hadn’t. It puts a bit more distance between us and them now.”