Former Ipswich Town striker Ian Marshall keen to see Blues replace ex-targetman Daryl Murphy

Former Ipswich striker Daryl Murphy, playing against Norwich lasts eason, has been linked with a mov

Former Ipswich striker Daryl Murphy, playing against Norwich lasts eason, has been linked with a move to the Canaries. - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

Former Blues striker Ian Marshall would like to see a big targetman ruffling defenders’ feathers at Portman Road next season.

Ipswich are currently in the Republic of Ireland and play their first pre-season friendly this afternoon, at Drogheda United (2pm KO).

They will head there with new signings, Jordan Spence, Tom Adeyemi, Bersant Celina and Joe Garner in tow – Emyr Huws has been give extra time off due to his international commitments – but still lack a real focal point to lead the attack, despite 5ft 10ins Garner’s ability in the air.

Daryl Murphy was the last man to fulfil such a role, before he departed for Newcastle in August, and he has been linked with a move back to East Anglia, but with Town’s rivals, Norwich City.

Marshall believes Ipswich need a presence like Murphy’s to lead the line – Town boss Mick McCarthy has already hinted at Celina being deployed wide on the left to put in crosses for strikers – but admitted he would probably not return for the Irish international, who has been told he can leave Newcastle.

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“If Mick (McCarthy) is going to play with two wide-men, putting balls into the box, then you need a big man up front,” said Marshall.

“Being one myself I like to see a big fella up there, but there are not many about for the right price.

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“(Daryl) Murphy is getting a bit long in the tooth now and if you were to try and get him back, you would probably only want to offer him a one-year contract and you wouldn’t really want to pay money for him.

“The amount of money Newcastle are asking is a lot and would he be able to recreate his form of 2014-15, especially as he is now a couple of years older?

“You never know though as he is an established Championship striker, but personally I would look in the lower leagues or at someone who isn’t going to cost too much.”

Marshall played in attack with several more slighter strikers during his time as a player and thinks a ‘Big man, Smaller man’ combination could cause problems for the opposition.

At the moment, playing 4-3-3 or 4-5-1 seems in vogue.

Marshall added: “When teams play with two up front, defenders don’t know how to deal with it a lot of the time.

“They tend to see everything in front of them, a lot of intricate play leading up to the 18-yard box, and there is not so much running in the channels and wingers turning defenders.”

David McGoldrick and Tommy Smith are not in Ireland for the same reason as Huws, whilst Andre Dozzell is on England Under-19s duty.

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