Ipswich Town contract conundrum – who would you keep?
PUBLISHED: 15:31 03 May 2018 | UPDATED: 18:46 03 May 2018
© Copyright Stephen Waller
Ipswich Town may be without a permanent manager, but there are still decisions to make on players coming to the end of their contracts.
The Blues recently announced that they have taken up the 12-month extension option in Teddy Bishop’s deal, but there has been no news on fellow homegrown midfielder Luke Hyam.
Former Northgate High School pupil Hyam has made 145 appearances for his boyhood club, but has been plagued by injuries in recent years.
The tenacious 26-year-old, who would faced increased competition for places in the middle of the park next season, is hoping he will stay on at his beloved Blues but admits his future may lie elsewhere.
The deadline for Town to trigger his 12-month extension clause was the start of this week.
Striker David McGoldrick has scored 41 goals in 155 games for the Blues but now nears the end of a contract which, unusually, does not contain an extension option the club can trigger.
The injury-plagued 30-year-old admitted as far back as October last year that he faces a ‘big decision’ come the summer, while ex-Blues boss Mick McCarthy quipped in January that he and the front man ‘could leave hand-in-hand out the golden gates’.
Winger Mustapha Carayol, 29, and midfielder Stephen Gleeson, 29, were both signed on short-term deals from Nottingham Forest and Birmingham City respectively back in January.
Carayol has produced some eye-catching displays when fit, but his injury record remains a concern, while Gleeson’s game-time has been sporadic.
When asked who would be making the decisions on player contracts following last weekend’s 4-0 win at Reading, caretaker boss Bryan Klug said: “I think those discussions went on with (owner) Marcus (Evans) and the manager (Mick McCarthy) before (I took charge).
“I’ve got an opinion and I’ll be asked for it I’m sure, but I don’t think I’m making those decisions. I’m not the decision-maker.”
Town keeper Bartosz Bialkowski, who has once again dominated the board in the end of season awards, is also due to be out of contract. Town have been locked in negotiations over the terms of a longer-term deal since once was agreed, in principle, at the end of January.
Should there be no progress in those talks, the Blues will trigger the 12-month extension clause in the Poland keeper’s current deal.
The Blues announced this week that Kevin Bru had left the club prior to his contract expiring this summer.
Teenage striker Ben Folami, who has broken into the first-team in recent weeks, is also nearing the end of his current deal. It’s understood he is currently negotiating something longer-term.
Decisions will have to be made on youngsters James Blanchfield, Monty Patterson and Shane McLoughlin – all of whom had the 12-month options taken on their deals last summer.
Bialkowski, Crowe, Hyam, Blanchfield, Gleeson, Carayol, McGoldrick, Folami, Patterson, McLoughlin
Carter-Vickers, Iorfa, Connolly, Celina
HEADING INTO LAST YEAR (WITH EXTENSION OPTION)
Chambers, Webster, C.Smith, Emmanuel, Spence, Woolfenden, Kenlock, Adeyemi, Ward, Waghorn, Sears, Morris
HEADING INTO LAST YEAR (WITHOUT EXTENSION OPTION)
Gerken, Wright, Knudsen, Bishop, McKendry
CONTRACTED UNTIL 2020
Skuse, Dozzell, Downes, Rowe, Garner
CONTRACTED UNTIL 2021
Huws, Cotter, Nydam, Drinan