FANS’ VIEW: Grant Leadbitter should be dropped as he continues to stall over contract
GRANT Leadbitter must be dropped today as he continues to stall over signing a new contract.
That was the opinion voiced by the majority of Ipswich Town fans after manager Paul Jewell revealed that his soon to be out-of-contract midfielder is still unsure whether to commit his future to the club.
More than 1,000 people voted on a poll held by this newspaper’s website yesterday afternoon, with a 63% majority saying that the in-form 26-year-old shouldn’t play against Millwall at Portman Road today – the Blues’ final home game of the season.
Leadbitter turned down a new deal towards the start of the campaign, while negotiations have dragged throughout the second half of the season.
Jewell said after last Saturday’s game at Crystal Palace that the 26-year-old had 48 hours to make a decision, but he has now made a U-turn on that tough stance.
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“I was expecting or hoping to have a decision to tell you today,” said Jewell at yesterday’s press conference.
“I had a long conversation with Grant on Wednesday, he expressed the importance of the decision for him and talks remain ongoing.
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“His biggest thing is ambition, he wants to make sure it is the right decision and he doesn’t want to be rushed.
“I didn’t want to back him into a corner either.
“At this stage of the season, I guess a week isn’t going to make a lot of difference but we do need to know by the end of the season – it can’t drag on past that.
“I said to Grant that if he’d said he wasn’t going to be here next season, I wouldn’t play him against Millwall – but he is still considering what to do.
“I know Ipswich fans might say if he doesn’t want to play for us, let him go, but that isn’t the case, I don’t want to let a good player go due to me being a bit hasty.”
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