Owen Moxon has rejected the chance to sign a new deal at Carlisle United, Paul Simpson said today.

The Blues midfielder will instead allow his current deal to run down and look at his options in the summer.

Manager Simpson gave an update on the situation at his weekly press conference this afternoon.

It followed attempts over several months to persuade Denton Holme favourite Moxon to sign an improved deal, and recent talk of a "positive" meeting with the player and his agent, the ex-Blues manager Graham Kavanagh.

Simpson said he was disappointed with the news but respected Moxon’s decision and said he hoped that the “clarity” on the matter would help the midfielder's performances between now and the end of the campaign.

“Owen Moxon has decided he is not going to sign a new contract at this moment,” said Simpson.

“He wants to just carry on playing and see what comes in the summer, which is obviously disappointing but he’s perfectly within his rights to do that.

“I think he’s going to wait and see what else is out there for him, and probably wait and see where we are.

“We haven’t fallen out. I’m hugely disappointed. We’ve made a fantastic offer for him to stay – if I’m honest probably the best offer I’ve ever made as Carlisle manager.

“But he is absolutely within his rights. I’ve got no issue with him turning it down if that’s what he wants to do, and we’re just going to have to see what happens now.”

Moxon’s stock rose after a sparkling first season back at Carlisle in 2022/23, when the former Blues academy prospect rejoined from Annan Athletic.

He played an inspirational role in United’s promotion and was named in the League Two team of the season.

The 26-year-old has remained a central figure in Carlisle’s League One side whilst the contract uncertainty has continued this campaign.

Asked if Carlisle had now withdrawn the contract offer in light of Moxon’s decision, Simpson said: “I wouldn’t say it’s withdrawn because everybody wants Owen Moxon to stay.

News and Star: Moxon has been a key player for the past season and a half at UnitedMoxon has been a key player for the past season and a half at United (Image: Ben Holmes)

“But we also fully respect the decision he’s made. we can't criticise players for it. We gave him a contract [a two-year deal in 2022] which finishes at the end of this season, and he's made the decision he has.

“We have to respect that. And I'm hoping that, given that clarity, it means that he's got a clear head now, and he just cracks on and we see the best side of Owen Moxon.”

News and Star: Gabe Breeze, right, is still considering a contract offer from UnitedGabe Breeze, right, is still considering a contract offer from United (Image: Richard Parkes)

Simpson, meanwhile, remains hopeful that young goalkeeper Gabe Breeze will agree the new terms the club have offered.

The academy product from Penrith impressed in four first-team outings this winter before the signing of new No1 Harry Lewis.

“There have been some discussions where they are wanting to know what the plan for him is,” said Simpson of the improved deal put to Breeze and his agent.

“The plan is he’s number two goalkeeper in a League One side as it stands at the moment.

“I don’t know what else is going to happen with that. I hope he decides to stay because I think this is a good place for him to develop and he’ll get opportunities here, but that’s for Gabe to decide.”