Murray could have returned to Boundary Park

Last updated : 23 February 2006 By The Chairman
It can be revealed that Paul Murray was offered a chance to return to Boundary Park but declined the offer. He also snubbed Crystal Palace and Hull City before he returned to Carlisle United, his hometown club, where had had vowed that he would end his playing days. Muzza has joined Carlisle until the end of the season and hopes that his stay will be as successful as his first spell was up in Cumbria back in 1994-95. That was the season that Carlisle won the old Third Division title and reached the final of the Auto Windscreen Shield. Murray left the Brunton Park club in 1996 for Queens Park Rangers and then moved on to Southampton but that was a disaster. Then Latics boss Iain Dowie brought him to Oldham where he became an instant hero with the Latics faithful.

In 2004 he left to join Mick Wadsworth, former manager of Oldham and Carlisle, who was then the manager of Portuguese outfit Beira Mar. A serious knee injury meant that he had to leave Portugal and that's when he returned to England. Murray said of his conversation with Iain Dowie at Crystal Palace, "I spoke to Iain at length and he wanted me to go down there but without my registration I wouldn't have been able to play for their reserves and show them what I could do. I've seen the potential here. If I didn't think this club was going forward, I might not have signed. But I'm totally convinced we're going to be successful. I've come here to get promotion. Carlisle will be one of the best clubs in League One and I'd rather be here than anywhere else in that division. And then we've got to kick on. The long-term aim must be to get into The Championship. We can't look back now. Other people will see the club has signed Michael Bridges, Mark Rivers and now Paul Murray, and they'll sit up and take notice. Carlisle United is on the map again and we're coming back in a big way."