MIDDLESBROUGH have kicked off their summer restructuring process by releasing eight players, four of whom boast experience with the first team.

Goalkeeper Jayson Leutwiler, defenders Stuart Parnaby and Frazer Richardson, and midfielder Cameron Park have all left the Riverside after their contracts expired.

Boro have also parted company with Birger Meling, Lewis Sirrell, Jake Fowler and Matthew Waters, who were part of the club’s development squad.

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Parnaby is the most high-profile of the players to have been released, although his second spell as a Boro player was nowhere near as successful as his first.

Having started in the 2006 UEFA Cup final during his first spell with the Teessiders, the right-back rejoined in 2012 after spending 12 months out of the game following his release from Birmingham City.

However, his only start of last season came in the opening-day defeat to Leicester City, and a succession of knee problems prevented him from proving his worth.

Richardson was equally peripheral, making just 11 appearances after joining last August, the most recent of which came in Aitor Karanka’s first game in charge at Leeds.

Leutwiler made five senior outings during his two years as a Boro player, while Marske-based Park failed to live up to the potential he displayed in the academy as he made just one start in the first-team ranks.

As well as trimming the fringe of their senior squad, Boro have also offered professional contracts to four members of the academy set-up.

Defenders Jonathan Burn and Kieran Weledji, midfielder Mark Kitching and striker James Warnett have all signed their first professional deals.