Delaney making sure new Ipswich offer is ‘Right for me’ before signing
IPSWICH Town defender Damien Delaney says that he is going to ensure that his new contract is ‘Right for me’ before putting pen to paper.
The 29-year-old central defender expects to make his decision later this week on whether to stay at Portman Road after his current deal expires in June.
Like Gareth McAuley, and skipper David Norris whose situation is less clear with his agent advising Town manager Paul Jewell to plan for next season without his client, Delaney has made no secret of the fact that if the terms are right he would love to stay at Portman Road.
He said: “I’ll take my time, make sure I’m happy with everything in the contract and then I’ll sign it.
“I wouldn’t expect there to be any issues, but you still have to be careful because this is an important contract for me.
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“Everything seems fine with what the club have put on the table.
“Hopefully it will all run smoothly because I am very keen to stay.
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“I’m also realistic enough to know that this is going to be my last decent contract.
“As you move into your thirties you obviously can’t expect the same contracts you got when you were a lot younger.
“That’s why it’s important to make sure that this contract is right for me.
“When you’re a young player you’ll sign whatever is put in front of you because you just want to get that side of things out of the way so you can play football.
“So I’m definitely not going to rush into signing this contract.
“It has to be right for me. We’re into April now so the club took long enough to make the offer.”
A forthright Delaney, who was the subject of a bid from Saturday’s opponents Crystal Palace in January, again expressed his feelings on the delay in getting to grips with the complex contract situation.
“It’s lunacy, to be honest,” he added. “It’s crazy that it’s been allowed to come to this at a club at this level, but there are many different factors behind why it has.
“Roy Keane did the job the way he felt was best and this is what we’re left with. Paul Jewell came in and picked up the pieces, but these contracts really should have been sorted out 12 months ago.”
“Paul Jewell has been pretty good to me.
“He told me from early on that he wanted me to stay but I think the delay in offering contracts was because the club wanted to hold off until they felt we were safe from relegation.”
Delaney expects to meet club officials this week to see if they can reach an agreement.
And his central defensive partner McAuley is also believed to be about to agree his new offer, which would see the pair form the backbone of what Jewell hopes will be a serious challenge for promotion to the Premier League next season.
Jewell has confirmed that midfielder Colin Healy and goalkeeper Brian Murphy have been offered new deals this week as the manager gets to grips with the harrowing position of having 21 players out of contract in the summer.
Kieron Dyer is eligible to face Palace after clarification that his loan deal with West Ham does not run out until midnight on Saturday.