Time up again for Marlon

Last updated : 06 January 2003 By Tony Scholes

Whether any of the speculation should be believed is debatable, he had apparently ended his time at the Turf after his last deal came to an end following the Manchester United game in December. But almost immediately another one month deal was signed that took him up to this weekend.

Stan has repeatedly said that he hopes to complete a longer term deal for the keeper and Chairman Barry Kilby told supporters that Marlon has been offered a deal until the end of the 2004/05. That is a deal that the player hasn’t accepted though and it remains unsigned.

This time Stan has merely said that he is hoping to sort something out this week, gone are the suggestions of anything other than a short term signing now.

So will Marlon be staying or going? If he goes where to?

Some speculators are sending him to Highbury where there is currently a goalkeeping crisis with both Stuart Taylor and Rami Shaaban out injured. That seems a very unlikely idea and given that Marlon played at Grimsby and in doing so cup-tied himself he would hardly be a good choice of cover for Arsene Wenger.

But then there is Preston and their obsession with Burnley players and Burnley targets. There always has to be some mileage in any suggestion of Preston wanting someone from Burnley.

There is no doubt there are goalkeeping problems at Deepdale with David Lucas out injured and Tepi Moilanen (well, just Tepi Moilanen) whilst third choice keeper Andy Lonergan is out on loan at Darlington.

But they are certainly not a good club to join right now with manager Craig Brown under pressure and turning on the players. "You can’t put heart where there is no heart", said Brown in an attack on the team after going out of the FA Cup to Rochdale.

Whatever is going to happen will need to happen quickly, we play Ipswich in five days time and Marlon’s situation will need sorting by then.