Bristol Rovers timeline for decision on ex-QPR, Bristol City, & Derby County star revealed

Bristol Rovers have a 168-goal striker training with them - but will the Gas sign him?
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Bristol Rovers are likely to make a decision this week on whether they will sign Chris Martin, admits Joey Barton.

The 34-year-old has been training with the Gas for the last week, as Barton and his coaching staff run the rule over signing the experienced forward. He left Championship club QPR in the summer after his short-term contract at Loftus Road ended, and since then he has been searching for a new club.

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Martin was on the books of inter-city rivals Bristol City, and remained in the area after departing Ashton Gate in January. He has had a respectable playing career with 168 goals in 629 games in club football whilst he has also been capped 17 times for the Scotland national team with three goals for them.

“He’s been training with us,” said Barton to BBC Radio Bristol.

“Training with you and getting a deal done there is a little bit of distance between that. He’s been good, joined in and done well with us, we’re trying to sort that out and we’ll see what happens next week.”

It was unsure whether Rovers would enter the free-agent market after the summer transfer window shut. Rovers had made a strong push to try and re-sign Jonson Clarke-Harris from Peterborough United, but a move fell through.

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As fate would have it, Clarke-Harris now faces his former club this Saturday when Rovers travel to London Road to face Peterborough United. Should Martin be signed this week then he would be coming up against the player that was due to arrive at the Memorial Stadium instead of him.

“He’s been a good lad, and we’ve only got one striker at the minute with John (Marquis). I know Azza can do it but just that focal point, I think we’ve seen the benefit of that today (on Saturday) so losing Lofty and not getting Clarke-Harris left us a little bit short there, we’ll see what next week unfolds.

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