Paul Simpson has not ruled out a future role for “top character” Jamie Devitt at Carlisle United.

The former Blues midfielder this week announced his retirement from playing at 33.

Injuries have led the popular midfielder, who is assistant manager at Workington Reds, to hang up his boots.

United manager Simpson said he could only speak highly of Devitt and said he would not be averse to him linking up with the Blues again down the line.

“We used him to do some scouting and with Greg [Abbott] in the recruitment side of it early on in the season,” said Simpson of the player who had two spells with the Blues.

“He then got himself fully fit and chose to carry on playing.

“I haven't seen him since he made the announcement. But if we could find something for Jamie Devitt, and it was right for everybody, then I'm quite sure we would.”

Devitt said a latest thigh injury, which would rule him out for the rest of the season, meant the time was right to call time on his career.

His latter years had been plagued by injuries and Simpson said the Irish midfielder had probably made the decision for the good of his family as much as himself.

“He’s a top character, a real top guy,” said Simpson, speaking to BBC Cumbria at his weekly press conference.

“It's disappointing for him, because I know he really wanted to try and finish his footballing career by getting some games under his belt.

News and Star: Devitt is joint assistant manager to Danny Grainger at Workington RedsDevitt is joint assistant manager to Danny Grainger at Workington Reds (Image: Gary McKeating)

“But it's been the story of his last few seasons, that he’s just picked up injuries.

“He's got a family and young children, and I think it affects them really badly as well. So I think a decision that has been made to stop hurting them and stop that disappointment.

“He's got so much to offer because of his personality. I wanted to keep him in and around here at the end of last season when he wanted to keep playing. So I wish him all the best with whatever he decides to do next.”

Simpson added that United would offer Devitt any help should he need it as he makes the transition from playing to coaching.

“It's important that the people around Jamie look after him now and make sure that we do occupy his mind and give him something to do.

“As a club, we will be there to try and help him with whatever help he does need.

“Jamie Devitt is one of us. So we'll keep trying to look after him.”