Hold fire, Jewell

THE knee-jerk clamour for a new striker, in the loan market, is ill-founded.

THE knee-jerk clamour for a new striker, in the loan market, is ill-founded.

Ipswich Town may be firing blanks at the moment, but I don’t see a journeyman loanee striker coming in to solve any goal-scoring problems between now and the end of the season.

Town are a distant 12 points adrift of the play-off zone, with just 13 matches remaining, so I don’t hold out much hope of making a late dash for the top-six. That is far-fetched.

There seems little point, therefore, in spending unnecessary cash on a new temporary striker, just for the sake of increasing the attacking options between now and the end of the season.

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Town are also playing far too well to go down, and remain 11 points clear of the bottom three. A mid-table finish, therefore, appears the likely outcome this May.

And given the mess that Town were in when Paul Jewell took over, less than two months ago – just three points clear of the relegation zone – that would be a satisfactory start to Jewell’s reign.

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Instead, new boss Jewell would be wise to hold fire on the recruitment front, and instead start making plans for this summer. And I’m sure that’s what the 46-year-old Liverpudlian is already doing.

Joint leading scorer Jason Scotland endured a frustrating afternoon in front of goal, in the 2-0 home defeat by Portsmouth on Saturday, as did teenage hot-shot Connor Wickham, who failed to live up to his billing with a flurry of missed chances. Substitute Tamas Priskin also squandered a good opportunity to bag a late goal.

But whereas many Town fans, from an encouraging Portman Road crowd of 23,345, were pleading for Jewell to act quickly and sign a new striker on loan, I believe it’s better to save money until this summer.

Proven goalscorers at this level are not available in March, but they will be in June.

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