Drury in line to start against Portsmouth

ANDY Drury will be out to carry on his good work if he gets the nod to replace the injured Colin Healy in today’s Ipswich Town Championship match against Portsmouth at Portman Road (kick-off 3pm).

Skipper David Norris will also come into consideration if he is considered fit enough for selection after making good progress since suffering an ankle ligament injury at Barnsley a fortnight ago.

“We are not ruling out David yet,” said Town manager Paul Jewell yesterday morning. “And Andy Drury will be back into my thoughts for start.”

Jewell admitted it was a tough decision to opt for Healy ahead of Drury as the only change for the 2-0 league defeat at Queens Park Rangers on Tuesday.

Drury was outstanding in his full Football League debut at the age of 27 against Hull City in the 1-1 draw at Portman Road last weekend.

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Midfielder Alan Quinn, who has been out all season with a groin problem, is not far off a reserve game while broken ankle victim Brian Murphy is working with the club’s physios but still some way away from getting back between the posts.

New full time scout David Hamilton has been welcomed by Jewell who said: “He will work in the north and abroad and he knows what type of player I want.

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“He will also do match reports and work closely with myself and chief scout Steve McCall.

“David worked for me at Wigan and is a good addition to our squad.”

Ipswich will end their season a day earlier than originally scheduled with the Football League bringing final day of the Championship forward a day to Saturday May 7 with 12.45pm kick-offs.

The Blues play at Sven-Goran Eriksson’s Leicester City and unless the play-offs have been reached it will bring the curtain down on the season.

Ipswich home match against Reading on Tuesday March 8 will be postponed if the Royals draw their FA Cup fifth round tie against Everton at Goodison Park on March 1 to accommodate the replay.

There is a welcome break from midweek games next week giving Jewell a chance to work on tactics with his squad.

Former Town defender Frank Yallop is in England with his San Jose Earthquakes side and they beat Colchester reserves 3-0 during the week.

The game was played at Tottenham’s Spurs Lodge venue with Yallop preparing his players for the MLS season that starts shortly.

Canadian international Yallop said: “We play Leicester and an internal match before we head home. It has been a brilliant exercise for us.”

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