Barnsley star’s future remains uncertain but talks continue

Marley Watkins
Marley Watkins

Marley Watkins has once again been linked with a move from Barnsley.

The club’s second highest scorer this seasons, with 10 goals, handed in a transfer request and was linked with Premier League and Championship clubs alike in January.

That request was denied by the club and Watkins has been one of the Reds’ standouts ever since.

His contract runs out at the end of the season, and talks are “ongoing”, according to coach Paul Heckingbottom.

He is still one of the side’s hardest working players and his attitude has not changed since his “head was turned” by top tier interest.

But until Watkins signs an extension past the summer then he will constantly be plagued by speculation surrounding his future.

The latest of which is a reignited link with Bristol City, who are just four points above the drop zone.

Former Barnsley boss Lee Johnson, who jumped ship for the club he played for during his career whilst the Reds were in a relegation scrap last term, has always been keen on the player. The manager, at the helm at Oakwell for just under a year, was the one who brought Watkins to South Yorkshire.

And Johnson is eager to rekindle that relationship next season.

Heckingbottom accepts the Reds need an influx of players this summer. Six loanees will definitely return to their parent clubs, with a couple of key figures still not tied down to new deals. Central midfielder Josh Scowen is one of those and he is the source of interest from Preston North End.

Fans are tired of hearing their players may be moving on. But they have had become used to it, with John Stones, Mason Holgate, Alfie Mawson, Winnall, Conor Hourihane and James Bree leaving.