YORK City have been unable to retain stars Alex Kempster and David Ferguson after the pair confirmed they were leaving the club.

The news comes as a major blow to York who had been in talks to keep the duo as they look to seal promotion from the Vanarama National League North next season.

Striker Kempster, who scored 12 goals for York last term, will instead join Northern Premier League premier division side South Shields, who play a tier below the Minstermen.

Left-wing-back Ferguson had been one of York’s stand-out players last season, being a solid defender in the division’s second-best backline and a creator of goals going forward, with 15 assists to his name.

Ferguson rejected an improved deal to stay with the club, York revealed on social media.

York remain in talks over a new deal with midfielder Kieran Green.