sport

Yates stay, Howarth to depart

Mark Yates has agreed a new one-year contract with Cheltenham but assistant Neil Howarth will depart at the end of the current campaign.

Yates, the third-longest serving manager in the top four divisions, and Howarth arrived from Kidderminster in 2009 and have twice led the Robins to play-off semi-finals but their side fell well short of repeating that feat this season.

Howarth, who previously spent four years as a Cheltenham player, will leave when his contract expires while Yates' new deal has been agreed in principle.

"We appreciate that this has been a frustrating season that has not matched the expectations of the supporters, the management or the board," chairman Paul Baker told the club's official website.

"However, we believe Mark has earned the chance to put together a new look team for next season for another crack at it.

"Neil has been a fine servant to our club over a number of years and we are parting with him on good terms.

"He has played a large role in the successes we achieved over the previous two seasons and on behalf of the club, I would like to place on record our gratitude for everything he has done for us.

"We wish Neil every success for the future and he knows that he will be welcome back at the club at any time."