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Page last updated at 11:34 GMT, Tuesday, 20 July 2010 12:34 UK

Former Walsall keeper Rene Gilmartin fires parting shot


Former Walsall goalkeeper Rene Gilmartin says there were two main factors in deciding to move to Watford.

The Irish stopper says he felt let down by the lack of a full-time goalkeeping coach at the Banks's Stadium and was disappointed by his new contract offer.

"Two years ago my goalkeeping coach Eric McManus was sacked - I still don't know why," said Gilmartin, 23.

"They gave me the excuse that it was the budget but that was very disappointing for me."

He added: "Me and Eric had a good working relationship and having a goalkeeper present five days a week was great for me.

They ofered me a contract which made me raise an eyebrow - do they value me as much as I value myself?

Rene Gilmartin on Walsall

"Mick Kearns came in but it wasn't his full-time job, he was coming in as a favour to the club two or three days a week."

Gilmartin displaced veteran Clayton Ince as Chris Hutchings' number one at the Saddlers last season and was expected to continue in that role.

"Towards the end of the season Walsall offered me a contract which made me raise an eyebrow - do they value me as much as I value myself?" he said.

"Are they looking at me to really excel as their number one?"

Gilmartin's departure for Watford and the retirement of Ince left the League One club looking for two new keepers, and they have signed up the experienced Macclesfield stopper Jonny Brain and former Aston Villa trainee David Bevan.

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