Ipswich Town sign Chris Wood on loan from Leicester City in time for the East Anglian derby

Leicester City striker Chris Wood

Leicester City striker Chris Wood - Credit: PA Wire/Press Association Images

Ipswich Town have confirmed the loan signing of Leicester City striker Chris Wood on the eve of their East Anglian derby match against Norwich City, at Carrow Road, on Sunday.

Town boss Mick McCarthy has long been interested in adding the burly 23-year-old striker – a New Zealand international team-mate of Blues defender Tommy Smith – to his squad, with fellow Championship promotion rivals Bournemouth and Wolves having also told Leicester to keep them informed if he were to become available.

He has been handed his favoured No.39 shirt, will go straight into the squad for Sunday’s televised East Anglian derby at Carrow Road (2.05pm ko, Sky Sports) and would become an instant hero among supporters if he enjoyed a dream debut.

It’s certainly a bold statement of intent from Town, who are currently third in the table heading into the final 13 games.

Wood has made just seven substitute appearances in the Premier League this season, scoring against Everton last August. In 2014/15 he scored eight times in 29 appearances as Nigel Pearson’s men took the Championship title in style. The campaign before that he scored 11 goals in 19 appearances on loan at Millwall, as well as a further five for Leicester in the second half of the campaign.

He will compete for a starting spot alongside 21-goal Championship leading scorer Daryl Murphy, January signing Freddie Sears, the soon-to-be fit-again David McGoldrick and Blackburn loanee Luke Varney.

Ipswich had been set to sign Leicester winger Anthony Knockaert on loan this week, a deal having been agreed, but the Frenchman – out of contract in the summer – decided to pull the plug on the move.