Ins, outs, loans and rumours - how transfer deadline day is shaping up for Ipswich Town
PUBLISHED: 20:26 30 January 2020 | UPDATED: 21:35 30 January 2020
The January Transfer Window closes at 11pm on Friday evening. ANDY WARREN at what looks ahead for Ipswich Town before the deadline passess
Speaking after Tuesday night's loss at Rotherham, manager Paul Lambert was clear in his statement that the Blues don't have money to spend heading into deadline day.
He says the money from the sale of Bartosz Bialkowski, a fee understood to be approaching the £900,000 deal previously agreed with Millwall in the summer, will not be reinvested now due to the fact it's paid in instalments and has clauses linked to appearances and that, if anything, deadline business will be restricted to loans.
"Not for money," Lambert said when asked about incoming business.
"We can't. Unless something comes up. Marcus (Evans) might say 'okay that's feasible to do', but we can't go out and get anybody. We need to see.
"You're getting players that teams don't want or guys that are not fit. That's the problem with January."
It's expected to be a quiet day at Portman Road but don't be surprised at all if the chance to bring in a loanee is taken.
So what's needed?
You could certainly argue no real additions are needed to a squad which already boasts cover in all positions and, despite some departures already this month, is big in number.
But you could also argue there are areas which need strengthening.
Gwion Edwards has made real strides as a makeshift right wing-back and has the shirt ahead of defensively-minded right-back Janoi Donacien, but the injury to Kane Vincent-Young has left a hole which hasn't truly been filled. With Edwards one booking away from a two-game ban and Donacien more of a flat-back-four option, could Lambert look for a temporary solution in a key area to cover for the fact Vincent-Young is unlikely to be up to speed until the middle of March at the earliest?
Given Lambert appears to be all in on a central defensive three, which has proved effective of late, is another central defender needed? Currently only starters Luke Chambers, James Wilson and Luke Woolfenden are fit with loanee Josh Earl, brought in to replace Toto Nsiala, out injured. Donacien, Myles Kenlock and Cole Skuse have all played minutes as central defenders for Ipswich, but aren't specialist cover.
Everton youngster Liam Gibson was a serious target at the beginning of the month, prior to the signing of Earl, but he is set to join Fleetwood on loan on deadline day.
A winger could potentially be on the order list, should Lambert feel he needs added options in case a shift of formation is required, while the Town boss may also want to take this opportunity to add a striker to the mix. Don't get me wrong, the Blues are well-served by Kayden Jackson, Will Keane and James Norwood while Freddie Sears is on the way back to full fitness, but you can never have too many weapons when you are chasing promotion.
History tells us that. David Johnson, James Scowcroft and Richard Naylor had 34 goals between them at this stage of the 1999/00 season, but the arrival of Marcus Stewart ultimately put the Blues over the top when it came to play-off time.
But, if Earl does prove to be the only addition this month, you have to feel Lambert has enough in his squad to get the job done come the end of the season.
It's hard to see any members of Lambert's first-team squad head through the exit door in the final hours of the window.
Jon Nolan has been linked with a move to big-spending Blackpool for a 'significant fee' but that deal seems something of a non-starter, with the Tangerines already bringing in Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall, a similar player to Nolan, on loan from Leicester.
Simon Grayson's side were one of three clubs (Lincoln and Shrewsbury were the others) to have shown an interest in Janoi Donacien earlier this month but, as mentioned earlier, he's needed at Ipswich for the remainder of the season at least.
Much of the window has been spent discussing the futures of Luke Woolfenden and Flynn Downes, who have both been linked with Premier League clubs this month. The Blues' two Crown Jewels have been watched regularly but no bids have arrived, with both players saying publicly they want to stay and help the club win promotion.
No movement is expected there.
Doing it for the kids
Idris El Mizouni's first few days at Cambridge have been eventful, with manager Colin Calderwood fired just hours after the Tunisian's full debut for the League Two club ended in a 4-0 loss to Salford.
Whoever ultimately takes charge at the Abbey Stadium will inherit a good player who will benefit from his time on loan.
There are others who could similar profit from regular gametime in the professional game, chief among them Armando Dobra. He's close to the first-team picture but hasn't played in a league game since his red card at Accrington in October. If the right club comes in for him, Lambert will surely be tempted to allow him out on loan to further develop his potential. He's out of contract in the summer, though, with discussions over-extending that ongoing.
Aside from Dobra, Brett McGavin, Barry Cotter and young strike duo Ben Folami and Ben Morris could all benefit from senior football elsewhere in the short-term, while Corrie Ndaba has seen a loan move to Scottish Championship side Ayr United fall through.