Conor Grant’s loan spell at Ipswich Town from Everton to be cut short

Conor Grant applauds the fans after the Ipswich Town v Brighton game. Picture: Steve Waller www.

Conor Grant applauds the fans after the Ipswich Town v Brighton game. Picture: Steve Waller - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

Ipswich Town have announced that Conor Grant’s loan spell from Everton will be prematurely cut short in January and that he has been allowed to return to his Premier League employers to feature for their Under-23 side.

The 21-year-old midfielder was due to set to spend the entire season with the Blues, but has struggled to break into the side in recent weeks and has now returned to Goodison Park.

Conor made his debut against Barnsley on the opening day and went on to make seven appearances in a Blue shirt, including four as starts. He was started on the left of midfield in the 3-0 defeat at Newcastle, was an unused sub in the 2-2 home draw with Rotherham and then left out of the squad for the 2-1 win at Sheffield Wednesday.

Blues boss Mick McCarthy said: “I felt bad for Conor because he has come to us to play games and, although he has had a few appearances, his time on the pitch has been limited.

“The reality is that he was here to develop his game and that wasn’t happening because he wasn’t getting the time on the pitch he needs at his age.

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“It’s not his best position but he can play on the left but Tom Lawrence has nailed down that role.

“He is better in a three in the middle of the park but we have got a lot of options there and we also have Kundai (Benyu), Dozzer (Andre Dozzell) and Adam McDonnell – who are our players – pushing to be involved now.

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“So I spoke to Joe Royle, who looks after the loan players at Everton, and suggested it might be better for all concerned, especially for Conor’s development, if he went back there and played for their Under-23s.

“Everton have been great about it, in letting Conor come here in the first place and then understanding the situation and agreeing that it’s best for his development if he goes back there.

“He’s a top pro, Conor, and a good player. He’s a great lad as well. He didn’t ask to go back. It’s my idea and it’s been done because it’s the best thing for all concerned.”

Kundai Benyu and Andre Dozzell are both included in Town’s squad for tomorrow’s match against Nottingham Forest. Kick-off at Portman Road is 5.30pm.

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