Martin dismisses Dalian talk

VASE SOCCER: AFC Sudbury manager Keith Martin today refuted stories that he is keen to play former Ipswich Town star Dalian Atkinson in the FA Carlsberg Vase semi-final against fellow Jewson League Tiptree United.

AFC Sudbury manager Keith Martin today refuted stories that he is keen to play former Ipswich Town star Dalian Atkinson in the FA Carlsberg Vase semi-final against fellow Jewson League Tiptree United.

Sudbury play Tiptree at home this Saturday with the second leg the following week. The other semi-finalists are Durham City and Whitley Bay with the final at Villa Park on May 11.

Flying winger Atkinson, who has been playing in Saudi Arabia, still has connections with this part of the world, with two of his former Portman Road colleagues Michael Cheetham and Lee Norfolk in the Sudbury side.

But Martin has no plans to contact the ex-England Under-21 international who also played for Aston Villa.

"Bringing in 'outsiders' is out of character," said Martin. "I have a strong squad of players and have no intention of bringing in any new faces. I will stand by the players who have got us this far."

Martin also knocked on the head rumours that former West Ham defender Julian Dicks is to be approached and if signed be eligible for the semi-final, second leg. Dicks has just been released by Canvey Island.

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Martin has four players on the treatment table but expects Ipswich-based Chris Howlett, Terry Rayner and Lee Owen to be fit. But Norfolk is only rated 50-50.

A big crowd is expected at the Kingsmarsh Stadium for the first leg with over 500 advance tickets having been sold.

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