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Players ease Bohs' woes!

BOHEMIANS' bid to stay in the top flight for next season received a double boost this weekend as the club stand to bank €100,000 from the sale of star striker Paddy Madden to an English club, while two players who had sought the winding-up of the club have withdrawn their court action and settled with the Dublin outfit.

News yesterday that Brian Shelley and Stephen Gray had come to an agreement with Bohs over unpaid wages and had backed down from their threat to have the club wound up was greeted with a sigh of relief in Phibsboro.

And the club are very close to finalising a deal with their remaining contracted players over a deal which will see them tear up their contracts for next season in return for a cash settlement.

"I am happy to confirm that all issues between Brian Shelley, Steven Gray and Bohemians Football Club have been resolved," said a statement from Stuart Gilhooly, the legal adviser to the pair.

"The players have reached agreement for termination of their contracts and these details will remain confidential.

"The winding up petition will now be struck out.


"The players would like to record their disappointment at how the matter was handled by the board and the length of time that they were left without any payment.

"They are, however, pleased to put the matter behind them and would like to wish the fans of the club well for the future. They are both now seeking employment elsewhere," the statement added.

And the club's cash flow situation will be greatly eased if Bohs are able to seal a deal today with Carlisle over the transfer of Madden to the League One club.

Bohs reportedly rejected an initial offer of €50,000 from the Cumbrian outfit but manager Greg Abbott was last night said to have backed a second bid which will come close to Bohs' basic price tag of €100,000.

Madden has been in demand for some time as Celtic made a formal bid for the striker last year while Derby County and Burnley were also tracking the U21 cap, but Carlisle hope that the signing of Madden can give them a mid-season boost -- United are currently 12th in the League One table but they're only five points off the play-off spot.

Despite the respite, there will be few celebrations at Dalymount as the club now face a very serious race against time to be ready for the new season.

Bohs open the 2011 campaign with a Setanta Sports Cup game in three weeks' time but as of today they have no contracted players and pre- season training under Pat Fenlon has been severely disrupted by the off-field chaos.

It's a sign of the club's lack of readiness for the new season that Bohs were not included at all on a list of 33 pre-season friendly games issued by the FAI media office last night, one of only three top flight clubs (along with Galway United and Drogheda United) who have yet to agree a pre-season game.

Manager Pat Fenlon has been frustrated with the off-season events and he faces one of the toughest tasks in his managerial career in getting a squad ready for the 2011 season at such short notice.

Bohs want their remaining players to cancel their contract for next season to fit in with a new budget which will see a wage cap of €500.