Fresh challenge for confident Haynes

CANARY-crusher Danny Haynes has become a Robin after persistency paid off for Bristol City boss Gary Johnson.

Derek Davis

CANARY-crusher Danny Haynes has become a Robin after persistency paid off for Bristol City boss Gary Johnson.

The Ipswich Town hit-man, who relished scoring against bitter rivals Norwich City, completed his move to Bristol City last night in a deal worth initially around �500,000, rising with various add-ons.

Johnson welcomed the 21-year-old Londoner who has signed a three-year deal and revealed this was not the first time he had tried to sign him.

The former Newmarket Town manager said: “Danny is a player we went in for back in January but we were told then in no uncertain terms he was not available

“Things have changed at Ipswich since then with a new manager coming in and the lad now feels he needs a move to kick-start his career.

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“We went back in for him last month and I was delighted when Ipswich accepted our offer.”

Johnson believes Haynes is ready to step up a level and stake a claim as an influential senior player and not just an exciting youngster.

He said: “There comes a time when you have to stop calling a player an up-and-coming prospect and I believe Danny has reached that stage.

“I told him I see him as someone who can challenge for a first-team place straight away.”

Haynes will link up with former Blues team-mate Gavin Williams at Ashton Gate and will be asked to weigh in with more goals.

Johnson added: “Danny is an improving player and I believe we have value for money.

“He is not the finished article yet but he is very quick, strong and direct and he has always done well against us.

“He can play out wide but I see him more as an attacking forward, someone who can play in a three up front.”

Johnson had hoped to include Haynes in the City line-up for their friendly at Hereford United last night but the paperwork was not done in time, although Haynes still went to Edgar Street to watch the game.

One of the first things he did was apologise to one of his new team-mates, Bradley Orr.

Haynes won a penalty during Town's 6-0 thrashing of City the season before last and Orr was red-carded for a professional foul.

Haynes said: “I will be saying sorry to Bradley. It was a good win for Ipswich that day but I'm a Bristol City player now and hopefully I can win a few penalties for the team in the season ahead.”

Haynes held personal talks and a medical yesterday and a minor sticking point between the clubs delayed the transfer being finalised, although everything was eventually ironed out amicably by around 6pm.

The FA Youth Cup winner felt he may not get the regular football he craves under new manager Roy Keane and moving to Bristol City was a good career move.

He said: “I like Bristol City as a club. This is a fresh challenge for me and I'm confident I can do well.

“I played a lot of games from the bench for Ipswich and I want to be starting games, from the start of the season right through until the end.

“I have been at Ipswich for a long time so it has been a difficult decision to leave but it is the right time in my career to move on.

“Roy Keane has brought in some new players and has his own ideas on how he wants to take Ipswich forward and I respect that.”

Fans favourite Haynes made his Blues debut at Leeds United in a 2-0 win in September 2005 when he came off the bench.

But he had to wait until December before making his home debut and he did it in style after going on as a late substitute and netting a last-minute equaliser in the 2-2 draw against QPR.

It was his goals against Norwich City that cemented him into Town folklore though. After scoring against the Canaries at youth, and reserve team level, Haynes found the net at Carrow Road in what was to be the first of four goals against the old enemy at senior level.

Haynes said: “I want to thank the coaching staff and everyone at Ipswich for the help they have given me in my time here, especially the supporters who have been fantastic to me.”

Ironically Norwich had first call on Haynes after he left Charlton and played in a trial game for City against the Blues but he ended up at Town's Academy under Bryan Klug.

In total speedster Haynes knocked in 20 goals in 126 appearances, for Town 43 of those were starts mainly on the right wing. He also grabbed two league goals in a five-game loan spell at Millwall.