Ex-Canary is set for Town switch

IPSWICH are poised to recruit ex-Norwich coach Steve Foley and switch Steve McCall to the role of chief scout to complete a dramatic shake-up behind the scenes.

IPSWICH are poised to recruit ex-Norwich coach Steve Foley and switch Steve McCall to the role of chief scout to complete a dramatic shake-up behind the scenes, writes Mel Henderson.

New manager Jim Magilton is wasting no time in finalising his back-room team, which was always his No. 1 priority after his own appointment was announced at the beginning of the week.

Nothing had been confirmed last night, but it is likely that an announcement today will mean Town going into the new campaign with only goalkeeping coach Andy Rhodes occupying the same role in which he operated last season.

Foley, surprisingly axed by the Canaries last month, is earmarked for a key role in bridging the gap between the Academy and the first team - a giant step that an increasing number of young players are being asked to take.

The 52-year-old former Colchester United player moved to Carrow Road 10 years ago to take charge of the reserves and in 2001 stepped up to first team level.

He was seriously ill a year ago and it was several months before he was able to resume his duties alongside Norwich boss Nigel Worthington.

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A large number of Canary fans expressed their anger at his dismissal, with many feeling he had been made a scapegoat for the club's failure to mount a serious promotion challenge last season following their relegation after just one year in the Premiership.

Former Ipswich Town reserve coach Steve McCall is ready to take on the role of chief scout after the departure earlier this week of Colin Suggett.

A member of the Town side that won the UEFA Cup in 1981, he made over 300 appearances before joining Sheffield Wednesday in a £300,000 deal in the summer of 1987.

McCall, 45, rejoined Town as a scout in 2000, covering the South West, and a year later he became the club's scouting co-ordinator, a role that saw him back at Portman Road on a full-time basis.

He turned to coaching in 2002 and although he was in charge of the reserves he also worked closely with the first team following Tony Mowbray's move to Hibs two years ago.

Chief scout is seen as a vital role because the club believe they have missed out in this area in recent years and unearthing bright new talent is high on the new manager's agenda.

The club's excellent Academy may be the envy of most other clubs, but Magilton is also keen to recruit hungry young players, probably in their early 20s, and the hunt will stretch to the continent.

Magilton will also make changes to the training schedule when the players report back on June 26, relocating the squad to the Bent Lane premises across the road from the Playford Road training HQ.

He said: “It will be a change of scenery for some players and a return for those who have been at the club for a few years.

“I think back to my time when I first joined the club and I want us to get away on our own, with things centred around the first team and getting away from the Academy.

“We will still have the best of facilities but there will be other little changes with regard to equipment and new areas like grids and sweat boxes, something that is designed to improve players' first touch.

“I will be asking questions of the players. I want to make them think and keep them on their toes.”

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