Ipswich youth star Gibbs set to sign for Norwich

Liam Gibbs celebrates his goal against Southend United in the FA Youth Cup at Portman Road Picture:

Ipswich Town youth star Liam Gibbs is set to sign for Norwich City. Photo: Ross Halls - Credit: Archant

Rising Ipswich Town youth star Liam Gibbs has agreed to sign for East Anglian rivals Norwich City, we understand.

The 18-year-old midfielder captained the Under-18s during their run to the FA Youth Cup semi-finals last season, was a regular for the Under-23s and made his League One debut in a November home clash with Charlton following on from some previous first team outings in the EFL Trophy.

Town were unable to agree fresh terms with him though, having made an offer at the back end of last year, leaving the Bury St Edmunds-based teenager to free to make a cross-border switch at the end of his contract as the Canaries prepare for another shot at Premier League football.

A number of top-flight clubs had reportedly been tracking his progress, including Manchester United, Leeds and Aston Villa.

Ipswich will now receive a compensation fee for the homegrown youngster, who has been at the club since the age of eight.

Liam Gibbs has signed his first professional deal with Ipswich Town. Photo: ITFC

Liam Gibbs penned his first professional deal at Ipswich Town on his 17th birthday - that recently expired. Photo: ITFC - Credit: Archant

Speaking about Gibbs last season, previous Ipswich manager Paul Lambert said: “He’s a really good player, a really talented footballer.

“But as I’ve said before, I say it every time, he needs a little bit of time to develop and there’s no pressure.

“He’s really clever with the ball, he’s a really intelligent player. You only really need to tell him something once and he takes it in.

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“That’s the sign of a good player, when they take it in first time then you know you’ve got a really good player on your hands. But again, without getting carried away, he has got a chance.”

In an interview with Suffolk News, Town academy supremo Bryan Klug said of Gibbs: "He is a dream to work with, first and foremost. He is a really good lad who is only interested in being the best he can be.

“He is a goalscorer and he is a goal creator.

"He has got the talent, there is no doubt. He is one of the most talented people I have worked with.

“I would not rule out anything for Liam. I think he has got the potential to be a top player.”