Owen stuck in limbo

Last updated : 13 May 2006 By Dave Moore
Latics defender Gareth Owen is stuck in limbo after asking for a transfer to leave Boundary Park as he doesn't know whether a fee will be asked for his services or not. He said, “I'm still waiting to see whether Simon Corney and the rest of the directors are going to put a price on my head. That would obviously affect other clubs' decisions and whether or not they could afford to follow up their interest. It's quite frustrating at the moment, but I feel I need to get away and establish myself with another club. Last season started okay, but then it tailed off and the manager openly stated his first choice back three were Guy Branston, Will Haining and Chris Swailes. I don't mean anything against those players, but at the age of 23 I can't be happy with being a fourth choice."

"I need to play every week, which wasn't going to be the case with Oldham next season, so that's why I spoke to the manager. The club put out a statement saying I wasn't happy with the travelling (from Stoke), but that surprised me because the subject hardly even cropped up in conversation. It does become a factor when you travel every day and don't play at the weekend, but the only reason I asked to leave was that I needed first team football.”

Latics boss Ronnie Moore responded by saying, “For me it shows a lack of something, whether that's bottle or fibre. When a player comes to you and says he doesn't want to stay, there's only really one answer. There's the door.” Can more be read in to this situation or is there an understanding that the player's face doesn't fit?