'I can leave with my head held high' - Norwood announces his exit

Ipswich Town striker James Norwood. Photo: Steve Waller

James Norwood has scored 30 goals in 57 starts and 30 sub appearances for Ipswich Town. - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

James Norwood has said his goodbyes to Ipswich Town fans ahead of tomorrow's season finale against Charlton at Portman Road.

Having fired Tranmere Rovers to back-to-back promotions into League One, Norwood joined Town on a Bosman free transfer following the club's relegation to the third-tier. He's scored 30 goals in 57 starts and 30 sub appearances during a stop-start three seasons disrupted by injuries.

The 31-year-old striker is now coming to the end of his three-year contract with the Blues and it appears that the club will not be taking their one-year extension option in his deal.

In a message posted on Twitter, Norwood tonight writes: "So tomorrow is the last time I could potentially pull on an Ipswich Town top.

"It's been an eventful ride that's for sure! Some ups and certainly a few downs!!! From scoring my first home goal to experiencing my first injuries it's been a whirlwind. 

"I've met some great people around the place during my time here, they helped me settle in quickly and provided me with some great conversations.

"The managers I've had over my time here (Paul Lambert, Paul Cook and Kieran McKenna) I've had good relationships with and have been fortunate enough to work with some great coaches.

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"I want to thank KD (Kieron Dyer, former Town U23s coach), Bryan Klug and Nathan (Griffiths, fitness coach) for helping me at my lowest in the three years I;ve been here. All the physio department (God knows I've seen enough of them) and the new staff for trusting me and giving me the opportunity to play again.

"Ipswich are in good hands with the boss and his coaching staff. I've really come to enjoy everything about the gaffer, Martyn (Pert) and Chaz (Charlie Turnbull) having worked closely with them and I wish them all the best.

"To the fans, thank you for your support. Well, 99% of you (didn't think I'd let some of you get away with it, did you?!) It was an honour every time I pulled on the shirt. I tried to give my all every game and I hope you understood for the lack of ability I have tried to work my hardest.

"I leave averaging a goal every 180 minutes. I came here to score goals and I feel I've done that, so I can leave with my head held high.

"So from me, enjoy the day tomorrow; good things are coming.

"Until our paths cross again... Uppa Towen." 

Tom Carroll, Kayden Jackson, Tyreece Simpson, Tomas Holy, Myles Kenlock, Bailey Clements and Brett McGavin are the other Town players with senior experience coming to the end of their deals. Blues boss Kieran McKenna said earlier today that he had spoken to some of them about their futures this week and will have further discussions on Sunday.

A full retained list is likely to be announced next week. 

James Norwood before the pre-season friendly at Dartford

James Norwood has said his goodbyes to Ipswich Town fans ahead of tomorrow's season finale against Charlton. - Credit: Pagepix