Football - Pressley slams rumours on trio

Manager Steven Pressley has dismissed speculation claiming Coventry are planning to offload prized assets Leon Clarke, Carl Baker and Joe Murphy.

PA Sport Report

Reports have linked influential striker Clarke, captain Baker and goalkeeper Murphy with moves awayfrom the crisis club in order to help raise vital funds and ease City's wage bill.

Pressley admits he did hold a management meeting with the trio on Friday in the wake of City's 10-point deduction but their sale was firmly not on the agenda, and insists he is desperately keen to keep hold of their services.

"Just to clear up that issue, the meeting I had with those players (Baker, Murphy and Clarke) was purely a man-management meeting," he told the club's official website.

"They're my three senior players who I have the utmost respect for. They have been great since I have been at the club and the most important thing is that they are at a different stage of their careers than our young players.

"They might have different aspirations to what the club is currently going through at the moment. I thought it was important I talked with them about that.

"The response from the players was a very positive one. My understanding is that they do want to stay and I have not had any direction to sell them."

And keeper Murphy has also moved to echo the words of Pressley.

"I'm a Coventry City player, put it that way. There was a meeting with myself, Carl (Baker) and Leon (Clarke) on Friday," he added. "The meeting was about us, being the more experienced players, and making sure we help in keeping morale high in the squad.

"For the younger lads in the side, they just want to be playing football. For us senior players, we can help keep the morale high and keep working hard.

"It is a tough time for the squad being deducted 10 points the day before the first game. That was basically what the meeting was about, just making sure the squad keeps on task and keep the morale high."

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