George to sign up for Town

GEORGE O'Callaghan scored the winner against Millwall in a behind-closed-doors game yesterday and promptly earned himself a contract offer.Blues boss Jim Magilton last night revealed to the EADT that the Irishman's display had reinforced what the Town staff already believed and will look to sign O'Callaghan before the January window opens.

By Derek Davis

GEORGE O'Callaghan scored the winner against Millwall in a behind-closed-doors game yesterday and promptly earned himself a contract offer.

Blues boss Jim Magilton last night revealed to the EADT that the Irishman's display had reinforced what the Town staff already believed and will look to sign O'Callaghan before the January window opens.

Magilton said: “I was delighted George scored. It confirmed what we already knew and we will now sit down with him and go through the bits and pieces and offer him a contract.

“Everything he has done has been very positive and we have been delighted with his all round attitude around the place which has been first class.

“This was a game I knew he would do well in and now we will see how he feels about the whole situation.”

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O'Callaghan has had offers from Hull City, Sunderland and Slavia Prague in recent weeks but told the EADT recently his heart was set on joining Ipswich Town.

The 27-year-old, who is comfortable anywhere across the midfield and as a striker, first played in England at Championship level with Port Vale and was once a target for Spurs but rejected the move after already giving his word on a two-year deal at Vale Park.

Things started to go wrong when Brian Horton succeeded John Rudge and Vale were relegated. O'Callaghan returned to his hometown club Cork City in 2002.

Three years later he picked up an Irish League winners' medal, the first time Cork had won the title in 12 years, and O'Callaghan weighed in with 11 goals.

O'Callaghan fell out with City boss Damien Richardson and was fined and transfer-listed but is now determined to make a go of it second time around in England.

Magilton said: “George feels he missed the boat a little first time and wants a second chance over here. Sometimes when you get players back they have a hunger and desire to make it and it could be we have unearthed a little nugget in George.

“He is determined to succeed after being harshly treated in the past and we could give him an opportunity to rectify that and I'm sure he will seize that opportunity.

“George has stated that Ipswich are the team for him and that's great. He has really bought into what we are doing here and has been readily accepted by the lads.

“We will see how the land lies with Cork but it is clear he will not play for them again so it should be pretty straightforward.”

O'Callaghan leapt above the Lions defence to head in a Jai Reason cross on the half-hour and impressed during the 90 minutes.

Playing just behind Jordan Rhodes, O'Callaghan was involved in much of Town's best play and went close with a couple of other chances, against a Millwall side that included Blues FA Youth Cup winner Liam Trotter and watched by Willie Donachie.

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