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NEWS: Dundee axe 16 academy coaches in cost-cutting measures

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Dundee have cut 16 academy coaches as part of money-saving measures during the coronavirus shutdown.

But it is understood 12 will continue in their roles for free over the coming months.

Tele Sport further understands former Dark Blues captain and manager Barry Smith is among those who left Dens Park yesterday.

The Tele revealed a month ago that redundancy consultations had begun between youth coaches and club secretary Eric Drysdale.

And yesterday it was Drysdale who broke the bad news to academy staff over the phone.

The Dark Blues have been hit hard financially by the enforced lay-off prompting first-team staff and players to accept a 50% wage cut until play restarts in October, dropping to 25% until May.

That was after managing director John Nelms announced a loss of around £500,000 sustained by the club due to the early end of the 2019/20 campaign.

With income severely depleted since March and no competitive action for another six weeks, the next cost-cutting plans centred on the club’s youth set-up.

And that’s seen the club’s part-time academy staff engaged in redundancy talks with the vast majority willing to continue their work on a voluntary basis.

Smith, meanwhile, had returned to the club last year to help coach the club’s future generations.

During his 11-year playing career at Dens Park, the Hall of Famer appeared 433 times for Dundee, behind only Doug Cowie in the all-time list.

He also led the Deefiant team as manager as the Dark Blues emerged from administration a decade ago before leaving in 2013.

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