Town working on permanent Walton deal as potential loan recall looms

Ipswich Town goalkeeper Christian Walton during the Sky Bet League One match at Portman Road, Ipswic

Ipswich Town are working on a permanent deal for goalkeeper Christian Walton - Credit: PA

Ipswich Town are working on a permanent deal for on-loan goalkeeper Christian Walton, we understand. 

The Blues signed the 26-year-old on a season-long loan from Brighton at the end of August, reuniting former boss Paul Cook with a goalkeeper who helped his Wigan side win the League One title in 2018. 

There were other sides interested in the keeper in the summer, including Nottingham Forest, as Walton headed into the final year of his contract with his parent club. But Town ultimately secured his signature for the season, as part of a deal which includes a January recall clause.

Ipswich Town goalkeeper Christian Walton during the Sky Bet League One match at the Valley, London.

Ipswich Town are working on a permanent deal for goalkeeper Christian Walton - Credit: PA

Interest from elsewhere is likely to remain, given Walton has performed well for Ipswich having gone on to cement the starting spot at Portman Road ahead of Vaclav Hladky, but it’s understood Ipswich are in contact with Brighton regarding the potential of a permanent deal. 

However, national reports have credited Championship sides with interest in the goalkeeper and suggested he will be recalled, at a time when Brighton are thought to be looking to sell, rather than allow his contract to run down to the summer. 

It’s likely, should Ipswich not manage to complete a permanent deal this month or make an agreement to make the loan permanent at the end of the campaign, he will be recalled and moved elsewhere.  

However, it’s also understood Walton is enjoying working with new Town boss Kieran McKenna and is receptive to discussions regarding a permanent move to Portman Road. 

Speaking recently, when asked about the potential for his loan to be ended early, Walton said: "I think that sort of thing is left to the clubs' hierarchies.  

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"I don't really have a say on that and don't really know my situation. All I know is I'm playing for Ipswich Town and I'm really enjoying my football here. 

"It's a massive football club. I think any players in the divisions would want to come and play for Ipswich. We have seen how many players have stepped down a division to come here. You can obviously see from the support how good the club is. 

Town keeper Christian Walton applauds fans after the game.

Walton has impressed during his loan spell with Ipswich - Credit: Steve Waller - stephenwaller.com

"I think my form has been good. I don't need to be talking about that after a 2-0 defeat at Barrow though. I'll just keep doing as much as I can within games and hopefully that has a knock-on effect throughout the team. 

"I'll just keep applying myself for Ipswich Town because it's a great club to be playing for. I love playing for this club." 

Should Walton, who missed the victory over Wycombe due to a positive Covid test, depart Portman Road before the end of the month, the Blues could potentially move for another goalkeeper to compete for a starting spot with Hladky and Tomas Holy. 

The latter’s contract expires at the end of the season. 

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