Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy prepared to be involved in ‘bidding war’ for Dundalk and Ireland star Daryl Horgan

Republic of Ireland's Daryl Horgan during a press conference in Dublin.

Republic of Ireland's Daryl Horgan during a press conference in Dublin. - Credit: PA

Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy says the club will be involved in a ‘bidding war’ to land Republic of Ireland’s rising star Daryl Horgan in January.

The Galway-born winger has played a starring role in the Dundalk side which became the first Irish club to reach the play-off round of the Champions League, already has the Airtricity League Premier Division title sewn up and who remain in with a shot of making the Europa League knock-out rounds.

McCarthy, a former Ireland player and boss himself, has had scouts regularly watching the 25-year-old and, along with assistant Terry Connor, is travelling to watch him in person as Dundalk host AZ Alkmaar tonight.

Horgan is out of contract when the Irish season finishes in the new year and the likes of Everton, Aston Villa, Reading and Preston North End have all been linked.

“We’re going to look at him, probably with 23 other Championship clubs,” said McCarthy, speaking ahead of tomorrow’s Championship home clash with QPR.

“Maybe it’s not that many, I don’t think Newcastle will be there, but there will be a few watching him. There’s a great deal of interest in him and he’s got in the Ireland squad recently.

“I’ll still go and watch him live. I’ve seen him on the TV, I watched him against Zenit, he scored a great goal there and we’ve had good reports.

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“It’s becoming a very public auction because quite clearly the agent has told someone (in the media) which clubs are looking at him. So, let’s make it as public as we can and they can get as much as they want. That might not be us if that’s the case.

“The more interest there is, the more money it costs. He’s a free transfer, but it’ll be a bidding war to pay him and to pay the agent.”