SWINDON Town midfielder Jack Payne revealed he does have a clause in his contract that would allow him to leave in the summer for free.

The 26-year-old signed a two-year deal at the start of the season, but after Town’s relegation to League Two was confirmed rumours began circulating about the future of one of the club’s brightest players.

Speaking after accepting his player of the season trophy from the Official Supporters Club at its virtual End of Season Awards, Payne discussed his current contract and where his future might lie.

He said: “At the moment, my situation is unknown – I don’t know where my future lies.

“As far as I’m aware, I have still got another year’s contract with Swindon. But because we’ve been relegated, there is a clause where I can leave.

“At the moment, I really don’t know what’s going to happen, and I haven’t spoken to my agent.

“I am really gutted with how things have gone because I was desperate to come to a club and settle.

“I’ve been on the move quite a lot over the last few years, so I really wanted to come to a club and stay for a few years.

“I’ve got a house in Swindon – I live here now with my girlfriend, and everything is settled, so my life off the pitch is really good there.”

Payne made 47 appearances for Swindon this season, scoring four goals and notching seven assists.

The Adver Sport STFC player of the year contender’s energy and never-say-die attitude caught the attention of the majority of Town fans, though most were never afforded the opportunity to see him play in the flesh.

Payne admitted that not seeing a full County Ground has been one of the worst things about this season, and if he is still in Wiltshire next season it will be one of the aspects of his return that he will look forward to most.

He said: “I haven’t really had the opportunity to play in front of the fans properly.

“I’ve been to play in front of a packed out County Ground as an away player, and it’s a really good atmosphere so I’m gutted I haven’t had the chance to do that.

“But I don’t know what the future holds. If I am there next season then I’ll be really excited to try and help the club get promoted, and if I’m not it will be a massive shame.”