Marshall's mixed feelings
FOR the first time in eight seasons Andy Marshall will escape the tension-filled build-up to the East Anglian derby, writes Derek Davis.The former Norwich City keeper has been a fixture in the derby matches of recent years, facing the Blues six times before joining Town and making two appearances against his old club.
FOR the first time in eight seasons Andy Marshall will escape the tension-filled build-up to the East Anglian derby, writes Derek Davis.
The former Norwich City keeper has been a fixture in the derby matches of recent years, facing the Blues six times before joining Town and making two appearances against his old club. Marshall is this week getting ready with loan club Wolves.
But like thousands in the area he will be watching with interest as more than just local pride goes up for grabs.
Speaking from his Midlands base as he prepares for the visit of Liverpool in the Premiership on Saturday, Marshall told the EADT: "I have got very mixed feelings about the game and how it will go.
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"The derby games are always massive for both clubs, for the whole region, but with only a couple of places separating them near the top this has added spice.
"Winning is vital anyway but with things so tight three points are crucial on Sunday.
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"It is a big game but it will probably be even bigger and more important come March, at Carrow Road, when there are even less points left to play for and it might have an even bigger bearing on where each club finishes."
Giving a prediction is tough but the keeper was ready to stick his neck out and go for a Blues victory until he heard through the EADT of City's ambitious attempts to sign three new players this week.
He said: "I would have fancied Ipswich to just about nick it but if Norwich get those extra strikers then I can see a 2-2 draw.
"It is close though, probably the tightest game between the two sides for many a year, and too close to call for anyone."
Having been part of a side which failed to reach the Premiership with City before, Marshall had his doubts once again for Nigel Worthington's side.
He said: "I was one of those who really believed that if they lost Huckerby, along with Crouch, then they would fall away. But if they can get Huckerby back, along with Svensson and McKenzie, I can see them having a really good chance.
"Huckerby has proven time and again he can score goals in Division One and he will help Norwich, or West Brom if he chooses them, to maintain the pace at the top.
"It is a big risk for the club to take. They tried once before and failed and got into a mess but they obviously feel stronger now to be able to do it again.
"Certainly they are in a good position and have a realistic chance of making it this time."
Marshall has yet to secure a seat for the derby game but is assured of a place in the Wolves squad at least until the New Year. He said: "We are playing against Liverpool on Saturday so I have been focusing on that game and not thinking too much about the derby match.
"I would like to be able to see it somewhere so I may try and get a ticket from one of the lads, we will see."
Earlier this week Marshall signed an extension to stay at Molineux until the end of the month, when the transfer window opens and Wolves have to make a permanent signing.
The FA granted special dispensation to take Marshall on loan due to an injury crisis at the club but Wolves have been told they will not be allowed to take any keeper on loan for the rest of the season.
Marshall and manager Dave Jones have already held preliminary talks about his future but have some way to go to reach agreement.
Jones wants to take Marshall until the end of the season while the Town keeper is looking for a longer contract and has other clubs interested in offering him a longer deal.
Premiership clubs could move in during January but Division One sides would also interest the keeper.
Wolves are looking to make history by becoming the first team to avoid relegation after being bottom of the Premiership at Christmas, a position they will still occupy even if they beat Liverpool at Molineux on Saturday.