Town will have to pay Andy to go

TWO clubs are locked in a battle to sign out-in-the-cold Ipswich keeper Andy Marshall.But the 28-year-old former number one will not be going anywhere until Town agree a pay-off.

By Mel Henderson

TWO clubs are locked in a battle to sign out-in-the-cold Ipswich keeper Andy Marshall.

But the 28-year-old former number one will not be going anywhere until Town agree a pay-off. Marshall's contract, worth around £15,000 per week, does not expire until June next year.

And while he is keen to quit Portman Road and continue his career elsewhere, he is equally determined that he will not suffer financially. Ipswich, who have already offered him a free transfer, are now in negotiations with the player's representatives about a


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severance agreement.

Marshall knows he cannot expect to command as large a salary elsewhere and would be perfectly entitled to stay put until next May.

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But his agent confirmed today: "Andy wants to play and he's not going to play there (Ipswich) is he?

"We are talking to two clubs and there's a possibility something will

happen this week, but that's all I can say at this point.

"I'm not going to name the clubs, or even say whether they play in the Premiership or the First Division."

Reading have been linked with Marshall since he was told he had no future at Portman Road and are believed to be front-runners for his signature.

Ipswich chairman David Sheepshanks has confirmed that he has met with Marshall's agent – and a possible pay-off would have been the main talking point.

The club may be loathe to offer Marshall a financial inducement to depart, but they must weigh up the cost against that of continuing to honour his lucrative contract for the next ten months.

Town are desperate to slash their wage bill and remain keen to unload a number of highly paid players, Alun Armstrong and Martijn Reuser among them.

A compromise arrangement, which will see Marshall pocket several months' salary before committing himself elsewhere, is the most likely outcome.

Meanwhile, boss Joe Royle will make several changes to his starting line-up for tomorrow night's Carling Cup first round home clash with Kidderminster Harriers.

Reuser and teenage left-back Matt Richards are certain starters, but Armstrong will not feature as Royle plans to stick to the same 16-man squad on duty for Saturday's stalemate with Reading.

Royle said: "I also have one or two things to think about on forward players, like who to rest and how.

"The weekend game was pretty taxing and we're off again on Friday for an important game at Crewe the next day. I'd like to use the substitutes against Kidderminster."

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