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Paul Simpson says Jamie Devitt’s burning desire to play for Carlisle United can be a “massive factor” in his bid for a new deal.
The midfielder has been invited for pre-season training despite not being offered a deal at the end of last season.
Devitt has already spoken of his determination to grab his chance to continue at Brunton Park.
It follows a half-season spell this year in which the popular player made seven appearances before suffering a hamstring injury.
Simpson said Devitt, 31, will be given every chance to prove his fitness this summer.
If he does, the prospect of a deal will be on the table.
“It’s a massive factor,” said Simpson of Devitt’s determination to be a Blues player.
“Jamie made that quite clear to me when I spoke to him.
“When we met I said, ‘This is the situation, I’m gonna be really honest with you, you haven’t done enough in terms of being available to warrant me offering a contract. I’d like you to come back for pre-season’.
“I did say, if you get an offer to go somewhere else’…but he said, ‘No, gaffer, I want to come here for pre-season and show you that I’m fit enough’.
“That says enough to me. It shows me I’ve got a player there who wants to be here.
“I think if he shows us he’s fit enough and he can sustain a level of fitness, I think he could be a good acquisition to our squad.”
Devitt rejoined the Blues from Barrow in January and, after two sub appearances under Keith Millen, was promoted to the starting XI by Simpson.
He played an important part in the consecutive victories over Leyton Orient, Rochdale and Oldham Athletic, before suffering his injury in the 2-1 win over Northampton Town.
Devitt, who starred for the Blues in his first spell from 2016 to 2019, was close to fitness in the latter stages of the season but Simpson did not want to risk the Irish midfielder after limited time back in full training.
Devitt this week spelled out his keenness to stay at Carlisle in a social media post.
He wrote: “Not the season any of us wanted but getting to come back and represent this club again and ultimately playing a part in getting safe means so much.
"I hope it’s not the last time I pull on the shirt - I will do everything I can to be back.”