MARK Marshall has been told he can be a key player in City's season after they batted away interest in him.

One club, believed to be from the same division, have been actively chasing the winger.

But Stuart McCall today insisted that Marshall is very much in his plans for the new campaign.

The Jamaican has looked impressive in pre-season and shone as a second-half substitute at St Johnstone on Tuesday.

McCall said: "I know last season things didn't go right for him for whatever reason. But you look at what he did at Port Vale the year before and since I've been at the club he's done really well.

"I think he has proved he can play left or right. He'll put crosses in from either side.

"We've had a bit of interest in him but for me he's going nowhere. He can play a key part on both sides of the pitch.

"He likes to get wide and put crosses in and he gets lots of good balls in. And I'll tell you what, he can finish. I know we haven't seen it yet but he can do that as well."

Phil Parkinson signed Marshall on the eve of last year's Scotland tour but he had a difficult first season at the club and started only 12 games, coming off the bench 25 times.

McCall inherited a player who was seriously considering a way out midway through his contract but now he can see Marshall is playing with a smile on his face again, having been given assurances by his new boss.

"Marshy didn't have a good season last time and when I first came in he probably wanted to go," said the City chief.

"But I think he's enjoying his football now and you can see the difference.

"It was also nice to see Fil (Morais) get 45 minutes as well on Tuesday. He showed his quality when he gets to the dead-ball line."