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08:00 Thursday 30 April 2009 

Drax commits his future but Nicholls set to leave

The turnaround of players at York Road this summer might be frenetic, but manager Johnson Hippolyte is pledging to stay - for a year at least.

With 12 months remaining on his contract, the Magpies boss is already planning for next season and expects to be in charge unless he gets an offer he cannot refuse.

He said: “If Manchester United came in for me I might have a problem, but otherwise I expect to stay.

“I am certainly not applying to go somewhere else.”

But because his playing budget has been pared to the bone, he is prepared for the rush to the exit from his most experienced players.

He said: “I know for example, and so does he, that we won’t have Ashley Nicholls next season. We can’t afford him, and given where he lives and the offers he has had from other clubs, he won’t be staying at York Road.

“I have spoken to all the players but have heared nothing yet from them or their agents. That will take a couple of weeks as they try to get a better deal somewhere else.

“But it takes time as some clubs are in play-offs and don’t know what league they will be in next season and therefore what their budget will be.”

Hippolyte added: “I have a feeling I know who will be staying, but I’ll have to wait and see.

“This time last year I was able to tie down players early because of the budget. But now it will be

“It will take time to put together the squad. I will be hoping that a couple of players get a knockback somewhere and I can come in for them.

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