Potters keen on Marshall

STOKE City are keen on transfer-listed Town keeper Andy Marshall, writes Derek Davis.The Blues stopper was told by Joe Royle at the end of last season that he would be allowed to leave on a free transfer, and that alerted a number of Premiership and Division One clubs.

STOKE City are keen on transfer-listed Town keeper Andy Marshall, writes Derek Davis.

The Blues stopper was told by Joe Royle at the end of last season that he would be allowed to leave on a free transfer, and that alerted a number of Premiership and Division One clubs.

But so far only Tony Pulis' City have made any initial enquiries.

But Marshall's salary, believed to be in excess of £15,000 a week, is likely to deter the Potters.


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Meanwhile James Pullen watched with more interest than most as Danny Coyne completed his move from relegated Grimsby to Leicester City.

The Ipswich Town keeper would welcome a move to the Second Division and the Mariners would fit the bill if Paul Groves fails in his bid to land Aidan Davison from Bradford.

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But the 21-year-old, who made two starts for the Blues last season, has yet to hear officially from Grimsby or any other league club at the moment.

He said: “If they were interested then I would be delighted to hear from them.

“I have proved I'm capable of playing in the second division and I would welcome the opportunity to play there again.”

Pullen was shocked to be handed a free transfer by manager Joe Royle at the end of last season and has accepted it would be best all round if he left quickly to get regular football rather than just sit out the remainder of his contract, which has one year to run.

With Matteo Sereni and Andy Marshall looking to battle for the No. 1 jersey, Lewis Price being promoted at the end of last season and likely to be the regular reserve team keeper and under-19s keeper Shane Suple being highly spoken off, Pullen knows he is unlikely to see any action.

He said: “I'm not going to be involved at Ipswich so I would like to get sorted out elsewhere as quickly as I can. Things are beginning to happen now as people come back from holidays and training starts at clubs.

“It may be the case that I go on trial for a few days here or there or even go out on loan when the season starts.

“That can be a way in as I found out at Blackpool.”

Pullen, who arrived at Portman Road from non-league Heybridge Swifts, initially went to Bloomfield Road for a month in August 2001 and stayed the whole season.

He made 19 appearances for The Tangerines in a successful stint. He was also popular in the dressing room and is well-liked at Ipswich, with his confident manner and lively sense of humour.

Meanwhile, Royle has vowed to help Oldham Athletic in their hour of need as the club hovers on the brink of closure.

The Blues boss, who led Oldham to two FA Cup semi-finals and won promotion with them, while working on a threadbare shoelace, has been asked to lead the teams out for a special fund-raising game at Boundary Park.

The Wembley Wizards will take on the Millennium All-Stars with players from the past donning the shirts once more. Royle said: “I'm happy to do anything I can to help Oldham. I have not done any of the organising or anything like that. I have been asked to lead the teams out and I'm pleased to do that.”

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