I'm surprised to see Greg Pearson and Frankie Artus leaving Grimsby Town
Talk of the Town ...
FOOTBALL can be a cruel game – just ask Louie Soares, Greg Pearson and Frankie Artus.
The Grimsby Town trio have all been told this week that they can leave the club on temporary or permanent deals.
We already knew that Anthony Elding wasn't part of the Mariners' bosses plans – in the short or long term.
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Rob Scott and Paul Hurst have made no secret of their desire to move the experienced striker on.
And only Preston North End's inability to make a firm decision seems to have left any doubt over when he would be leaving the club for good.
Soares' Town future was also looking bleak after the winger was omitted from the squad for long spells and farmed out on loan to Ebbsfleet United in October.
Since his return, the 28-year-old has had no chance to impress, and now heads off to Alfreton for the remainder of the season.
Given that the former Hayes man's contract is up in the summer, that will probably be the last we see of the wideman.
The other two players made available by the joint managers are perhaps more surprising.
Pearson arrived at the start of the season with a big reputation. The former West Ham youth-teamer helped Burton Albion into the Football League and had a decent scoring record with the Brewers.
However, the 27-year-old has made just seven starts for the Mariners and struggled to jump ahead of Andy Cook and Ross Hannah in the pecking order.
Niggling injuries haven't helped his cause, but anyone who saw his two-goal showing against Mansfield Town at the end of August will be surprised that things haven't worked out for him.
The forward looked almost unplayable that Bank Holiday Monday afternoon at Blundell Park.
Unfortunately, displays of that ilk have been the exception rather than the norm, and as a result, the Brummie hasn't benefited from a run of games.
Artus, meanwhile, appeared more than 30 times for Town last season and started eight of the first nine this time around.
But the arrival of wingers Scott Neilson, Marcus Marshall and, most recently, Jamie Devitt has seen him slip out of contention.
Derek Niven and Craig Disley's solid performances in the middle of the park have also blocked a potential route into the team.
A hernia operation came at the worst possible time, in November, and Artus hasn't been involved since.
Both Pearson and Artus' contracts are up at the end of the current campaign and the pair are facing an uncertain future in the lower echelons of the professional game.
Whether Scott and Hurst want to see the back of all four players, or just need to increase their chances of removing a couple from the wage bill to make way for new faces, we'll have to see.