Shrimpers aim to keep Clarke
Southend chairman Ron Martin insists the club want to discuss a new contract with Peter Clarke.
Last Updated: 23/04/09 9:55am
Southend United chairman Ron Martin insists the club want to discuss a new contract with Peter Clarke.
The defender's future was placed in doubt last week when Martin was reported to have claimed that Clarke had turned down the chance to discuss a new deal.
Clarke has expressed his surprise at Martin's declarations, but the Shrimpers supremo insists his comments had been taken out of context.
Martin is now hoping to sit down with the 27-year-old in order to agree an extension to his contract, which expires at the end of the season.
"For the record there have been no discussions with Peter about him renewing his contract since September 2008," Martin told the club's official website.
"At that time Peter wanted to focus on his football, which I respected, and to keep his options open until the end of this season.
"Before the start of the current season we made it clear to Peter's agent that we would be interested in extending his current contract.
"Again his agent wished to keep Peter's options open and would not engage in discussions on his behalf at that time.
"While we would have extended his contract in July last year we are now saying we still want Peter to remain at Southend United and wish to talk to him about a new contract.
"With just two remaining games, hopefully we can have those formal discussions with Peter and his agent soon.
"I have been unequivocal and consistent and I hope once again I have made it clear that Southend United would like Peter Clarke to stay at the club. Whether terms can be agreed I do not know, but I hope so."