‘It will not be the end of the world if Gareth (McAuley) goes’ - team mate

DAMIEN Delaney today stressed that if his Ipswich Town central defensive partner Gareth McAuley moves on as expected in the summer it will not be the end of the world.

It is looking increasingly likely that McAuley and skipper David Norris will not be signing the new contracts currently on the table to replace current ones that run out on June 30.

McAuley appears to be in receipt of a much more lucrative deal to move to Scottish giants Rangers while Portsmouth are confident that they will land midfielder Norris before the start of next season.

Delaney, who committed himself to the Blues by signing a new two-year deal a fortnight ago, would love to see both players stay.

But he has faith in manager Paul Jewell constructing a promotion-chasing Championship side next term with or without those two players.

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“Gareth is like Chuck (Norris) he would like to stay,“ said Delaney.

“And I would like him to stay; of course I would.

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“But if not it will not be the end of the world for Ipswich Town.

“The gaffer will get someone else in and the club will still be here.

“The manager knows the scene and he knows what it takes to do well at this level.

“He‘s seen some good times and some bad times and although you have always got to have hope - ours is genuine.

“The gaffer has his head screwed on and he’s been consistent with what he has said since he arrived.

“He knows what he wants in a team - what system, what tactics.

“He has not deviated one bit and he’s looking for his team to up the level.

“He knows what he wants - and he’ll get it.”

And reflecting more on the McAuley situation, Delaney added: “Gareth was at the game on Saturday and he is old enough to make up his own mind.

“If he wants to stay he’ll stay and if he wants to go he’ll go.

“I have not had a chat with him for a few days, but he’s his own person and will do what’s right for him.

“I’ve been equally decisive. I wanted to stay and when I was offered a deal that I was after I was a man of my word.”

Town finish their season with a trip to Leicester City on Saturday lunchtime with Connor Wickham a possibility to return after a rib injury and Lee Martin available again after serving a three-match suspension.

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