Scotland manager Steve Clarke has urged goalkeeper David Marshall to leave Derby County if he is still left out in the cold at Pride Park for the foreseeable future and wants to get back into the national squad, making this bold statement to The Scotsman.
36-year-old Marshall was Clarke’s first-choice shot-stopper at the European Championships earlier this summer, playing in all three of his nation’s group games as they competed in their major international tournament since 1998.
However, things have taken a turn for the worst domestically for the Derby keeper, who now finds himself behind both Kelle Roos and summer signing Ryan Allsop in the pecking order in the East Midlands despite his wealth of experience in the second tier.
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The Scot was even previously named captain by manager Wayne Rooney despite only arriving at the second-tier side from previously-stricken Wigan Athletic last August, but may believe his time with the Manchester United legend is up if he sees no pathway to the first team again.
As per Football Insider, the Rams have taken an interest in another goalkeeper in Christian Walton, although this is unlikely to happen during this window due to their current transfer embargo and the need to pay a fee to take the 25-year-old off Brighton & Hove Albion’s hands.
Regardless of what happens with Walton, things aren’t looking bright for Marshall at Derby County and after leaving him out of Scotland’s squad for their upcoming World Cup qualifiers, manager Steve Clarke has sent a message to the veteran.
Speaking to The Scotsman on Marshall’s current predicament, Clarke said: “David Marshall, who was my number one, he has had a tough time at Derby, he has found himself as the number three goalkeeper.
“I don’t want to comment on the politics or whatever of that decision but I have spoken to David, he is disappointed not to be involved but he fully understands why he is not involved in this camp.
“If he gets himself a move before the end of this transfer window, or he gets back involved with Derby, David would be straight back into my thoughts, no doubt about that.”
Premier League club Liverpool are one side thought to be keen on a move for Scotland’s former number one according to the Daily Mail, potentially offering a new lease of life to the current Derby County outcast before the transfer window closes.
He may not have wanted to comment on the ‘politics’ of the situation, but this is certainly a strong statement from the Scotland manager who is probably in disbelief at seeing his previous first-choice goalkeeper be relegated to third in the pecking order at Derby.
As a goalkeeper, his national career certainly isn’t over at the age of 36, but there will only be a limited period of time for him to start playing regularly again until the door slams shut permanently on playing for his national team.
With Derby currently in desperate need of more signings, they may decide to let Marshall go in a bid to fund these new additions with Kelle Roos and Ryan Allsop already at their disposal.
But there are just five days left to go until the transfer window closes, so he may have to wait until January to get his move unless the Rams agree to mutually terminate his contract.
Regaining his place in Wayne Rooney’s first team is also a possibility and something that certainly can’t be ruled out, but the shot-stopper will probably be desperate to play regularly regardless of where he ends up.