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Ex-Crystal Palace defender links up with Carlisle Utd

Former Crystal Palace and Southampton defender Danny Butterfield is training with Carlisle United.

Danny Butterfield photo
Danny Butterfield gets stuck in against Queens Park Rangers’ Jay Simpson

The 33-year-old free agent has linked up with the Blues ahead of this Friday’s crunch game at Colchester.

It is understood that manager Greg Abbott wants to tap into the versatile defender’s experience in a game which could determine his fate.

Abbott wants as many older heads in his side as possible for the trip to Essex in a desperate bid to halt Carlisle’s dreadful start to the League One campaign which has heaped pressure on the Blues boss.

And the signs are that Butterfield, who trained with United yesterday, could be handed a short-term deal.

Butterfield can operate in defence and midfield but is primarily a right-back, and that is the position where he is likely to be used by Abbott.

He was released by Southampton in June and had a pre-season trial with promoted Championship club Bournemouth.

The Lincolnshire-born player made 54 appearances for the Saints before he was deemed surplus to requirements by manager Mauricio Pochettino.

Butterfield had previously made his name with Crystal Palace, playing 271 times for the Selhurst Park club between 2002 and 2010.

He started out at Grimsby, while he had later loan spells at Charlton and most recently Bolton, where he made six appearances towards the end of last season.

In his press conference yesterday Abbott would not confirm the identity of the player who was training with the Blues, only describing him as a “utility player”.

“It’s somebody who might give us a bit of a helping hand come the weekend,” he said.

The fact he is poised to bring in Butterfield indicates the board at Brunton Park are continuing to give Abbott more time to turn things around despite many fans now calling for his head.

Butterfield would be the fourth new player to join the Cumbrians since the start of the season, following loanees Kevin Feely, Paul Black and Adam Campbell into Brunton Park.

Abbott said injured duo Matty Robson (back) and Paul Thirlwell (achilles) are being pencilled in to return at Colchester, with Lee Miller also back from suspension.

“I think we will be 99 per cent at full-strength,” he said. “If they are fit, they will play.

“They have got confidence and mental toughness, which is where we have been weak in the last few games.

“Asking kids to do men’s jobs at the moment is a bit unfair.”

Have your say

Hopefully this means we've sent Feely back to Charlton. He managed to make Mike Edwards look good by comparison, which is some achievement.

Posted by Mary Johnstone on 23 August 2013 at 11:20

The writings already on the wall for Carlisle. Relegation I'm afraid.

Posted by BigH on 23 August 2013 at 09:51

View all 17 comments on this article

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