Jewell and Cotterill don’t see eye-to-eye

PAUL Jewell is not impressed by Portsmouth manager Steve Cotterill’s very public interest in Ipswich Town skipper David Norris.

PAUL Jewell is not impressed by Portsmouth manager Steve Cotterill’s very public interest in Ipswich Town skipper David Norris.

Cotterill has made no attempt to hide the fact that he wants Norris to move to Fratton Park this summer, when the 29-year-old’s current contract expires.

Jewell, though, does not want Norris to be going anyway, not least Portsmouth - unless the player himself decides to go elsewhere.

“The Portsmouth manager (Cotterill) seems to have a lot to say about our players, doesn’t he?” insisted Jewell during yesterday’s Portman Road press conference.

You may also want to watch:

“Chuck (Norris) will get his wish on Saturday, if Steve Cotterill is to be believed, because one of the two clubs that he is desperate to play for are going to be here on Saturday!

“I don’t know which one that is, but he hasn’t indicated to me that he wants to leave.

Most Read

“It’s the same as it was before. If he is happy to stay, I am happy to keep him.

“But what will be, will be, I don’t think it’s right for me to comment on other teams’ players, and vice versa, but I can’t help other managers commenting on mine,” added Jewell.

Cotterill pulled no punches when discussing Norris’ supposed willingness to sign for Portsmouth last month, during the transfer window, and he is not likely to let up in his quest this summer.

Norris has again been the model of consistency for Town this season, even during their difficult first half of the campaign. In addition to his box-to-box running, he is also Town’s joint leading scorer with nine goals.

“We know that David Norris wants to join us and hopefully that one can be sorted out,” revealed Cotterill last month.

“I’m pretty sure he will be coming to us in the summer. He is happy to come.”

Norris has missed Town’s last three matches, after twisting his ankle and knee during the first half of the 1-1 draw at Barnsley.

The knee is no longer a problem, and the ankle has improved enough for him to resume light training yesterday.

That gives Norris an outside chance of making the squad for tomorrow’s home clash against Pompey. Jewell has certainly not ruled him completely out of the equation.

“He’s trained with the physio in the morning, and done some running. So we will have to see how he is tomorrow,” continued Jewell yesterday.

“I don’t want to rush Chuck back, because we have got a lot of games left between now and the end of the season, but he has got a chance, although it’s a slight chance.

“I don’t like ruling players out on a Thursday.”

However, Jewell will have to make at least one change to his midfield this weekend, due to an injury to Colin Healy. The Irishman was replaced after just 40 minutes of Tuesday night’s 2-0 defeat at league leaders QPR.

It was hard luck on Healy, who had just begun to establish himself for the first time since his arrival from Cork City in the summer of 2009.

A run of injuries and a struggle for form had hampered him last season, culminating in a loan spell at Falkirk.

And he also had difficulty holding down a regular place this term, until enjoying a new lease of life under new boss Jewell.

Healy has played in 10 of Town’s last 11 games, and started eight of them, but he won’t be lining up against Portsmouth.

Jewell confirmed: “Colin has torn a muscle in his stomach, so unfortunately for him he won’t be considered for the weekend.”

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter