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Ipswich closing in on Bree deal amid questions over Pennington's Portman Road future

PUBLISHED: 14:42 31 January 2019 | UPDATED: 15:46 31 January 2019

Matthew Pennington has been linked with a move to Derby while James Bree is close to joining Ipswich Town. Picture: ARCHANT/PA

Matthew Pennington has been linked with a move to Derby while James Bree is close to joining Ipswich Town. Picture: ARCHANT/PA

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Ipswich Town are closing in on the loan signing of Aston Villa defender James Bree while questions have been raised regarding the future of Matthew Pennington.

James Bree has been linked with Ipswich Town. Picture: PAJames Bree has been linked with Ipswich Town. Picture: PA

Bree is set to move to Portman Road on loan until the end of the season, with Ipswich boss Paul Lambert identifying right-back as an area of need soon after his arrival at Portman Road.

His arrival would take the Lambert’s number of loanees to six, with only five permitted to be used in a matchday squad.

Matthew Pennington has been linked with a switch to Derby County by The Sun but we understand, as of last night following a conversation between Ipswich and Everton, it was decided the defender would remain on loan at Portman Road.

For Pennington’s loan to be terminated, an agreement would need to be made between Ipswich, Everton and the player himself.

Pennington has made 24 appearances for Ipswich this season, performing well as both a central defender and a right-back.

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“We’re doing a couple of things,” Ipswich boss Paul Lambert said.

“Because of the loan system we are up to the limit and have to watch what happens on that front.

“In these moments you are never quite sure and things pop up that might be interesting for us. I won’t do it unless someone wants to be here and it’s right for the football club.

“It (right-back) a position we identified when we came in but we obviously can’t do anything in November and December.

“If one comes in it will be beneficial.”

When asked whether he would consider completing a loan deal today, Lambert said: “If I thought it was right and things started to move then you’d have to look at it.

Matthew Pennington clears during this second half pressure from Rotherham.    Picture: STEVE WALLER     WWW.STEPHENWALLER.COMMatthew Pennington clears during this second half pressure from Rotherham. Picture: STEVE WALLER WWW.STEPHENWALLER.COM

“There are salaries to consider with loans. (Parent) clubs can start saying ‘why is he not playing?’”

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Lambert was then asked whether he would consider sending one of his current five loanees back to their parent clubs, or instead try to manage the situation.

“There’s a bit of both really,” he said.

James Bree has been linked with Ipswich Town. Picture: PAJames Bree has been linked with Ipswich Town. Picture: PA

“It’s a difficult one to manage what you think is right and wrong for a number of reasons. The minuses outweigh the pluses when you have too many loans. That’s the way to view it.”

On the loan system in general, Lambert said: “To me it shows up the loan system for what it is. It’s incredible. You maybe have six or seven loans and can only have five in your match day squad.

“That’s why I said to you before that the loan system is not healthy. You can maybe have one or two, that’s totally fine, but not this.

“You’re always hving to manage that scenario (when you have more than five loan players) and for a manager that’s not a great scenario to be in.

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“You have to leave one out, manage their disappointment, and clubs can say ‘why are they not playing?’ It can create something that you could do without.

“But at the same time you have to get guys who you think can help.

“That’s why I keep saying that the club has got to get back to getting it’s own players; whether it’s young players coming through, even better, or ones you buy.

“One or two loans is fine, but this scenario is no good.”

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