Ricketts spurns Saddlers

Sport | Published:

Former England striker Michael Ricketts has snubbed an ambitious attempt by Walsall to tempt him back to Bescot. The Southend outcast is planning a comeback in the next few weeks, but has ruled out the possibility of relaunching his career with the League Two leaders.

Ricketts, pictured, is on the lookout for a new club after having his contract terminated by the Shrimpers after just two appearances amid rumours of a bust-up with manager Steve Tillson over his fitness.

And those close to the 27-year-old have revealed he was sounded out privately following his departure from Roots Hall about returning to Saddlers - the club who nurtured him in their youth team and gave him his professional debut as an 18-year-old in 1996.

But, despite bring turfed out of Southend - his fifth club in just over two years - Ricketts' representatives have insisted he is unwilling to drop down to League Two.

His agent Simon Kennedy said: "We're in the process of sorting out severance terms with Southend and the reality is that Michael should never have been in the position of being at Southend.

"Michael is very grateful to Southend, but he really should be playing at the top level. He will be back in about three weeks, and no disrespect to Southend but it's going to be at a considerably higher level than that.

"One of the first results Michael looks for every week is Walsall's, but as far as going back there is concerned, I can rule that out.

"Things haven't gone well for Michael in recent years and some of that has been his own fault, but going back to Walsall wouldn't be the right move for his career."

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