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Page last updated at 09:34 GMT, Wednesday, 1 July 2009 10:34 UK

Trialists given Bluebirds chance

John Murphy
Murphy made over 200 appearances for Blackpool

Nine trialists have been given the chance to earn contracts with Barrow as the club prepare for the new season.

Former Blackpool and Chester striker John Murphy is one of those hoping to impress after a spell in Ireland.

"We've got a lot of lads coming through. Some to get fit, others hoping to earn a contract," Bayliss told BBC Radio Cumbria.

"We're looking at keeping five or six for next season... it would make our squad a lot stronger than last year."

Murphy, 32, began his career as a trainee with Chester before going on to make over 150 appearances for the club in two spells.

We've also had discussions with a League club about a forward coming in on a long-term loan and that's looking quite good as well

Dave Bayliss

He joined Blackpool in 1999, scoring 83 times in 229 appearances for the Seasiders before a move to Macclesfield Town in 2006.

He returned from an injury-hit spell with League of Ireland Premier Division side St Patrick's Athletic in February.

The Barrow manager is looking forward to working with the 32-year-old striker in pre-season training and is hoping he can reach full fitness.

"John's had a few injuries last year but if he proves his fitness to me and Darren (Sheridan) then he's one that would really give us strength up front."

Bayliss also revealed that the club are taking a look at another former Football League striker along with several defenders who have "hundreds of appearances" at League and Blue Square Premier level.

"We're after a top quality centre-half and a top quality forward. They're the main two on our shopping list," he said.

"We've also had discussions with a League club about a forward coming in on a long-term loan and that's looking quite good as well."

Bayliss confirmed to BBC Radio Cumbria that the club have made an offer to an unnamed central defender and are hoping to have an answer by the end of this week.

"He's played a lot of years in the Football League and has a lot of experience in the (Blue Square) Premier as well," he said.

"If we get this kid it will be a massive coup for the club.

"He's a free agent and he's seeing what we're trying to do at the club and hopefully he'll jump on-board and try and push us on to the next level."

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