Jim could be set to sell Clarke

BLUES boss Jim Magilton admitted he may consider selling Billy Clarke in January and is ready to talk to Hermann Hreidarsson about a possible return to Portman Road.

Derek Davis

By Derek Davis

BLUES boss Jim Magilton admitted he may consider selling Billy Clarke in January and is ready to talk to Hermann Hreidarsson about a possible return to Portman Road.

While Magilton is eyeing Darren Ambrose as a possible mid-season signing, he has not ruled out the possibility of bringing back Clarke who has netted nine league and cup game in 18 appearances while on loan at League Two side Darlington.

But there is also a chance that Quakers boss Dave Penney will try and make Clarke's stay permanent

Magilton said: “I would not do anything without having a conversation with the player first. So I will sit down and discuss it with the player and go from there.

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“He is enjoying his football and benefitting from being there even if it is at a lower level.

“It is the same with Dean Bowditch who scored on his debut and Liam Trotter who is getting games and doing well. That is what the loan system is for.”

In-form Clarke has indicated he would consider extending his stay at Darlington after such a successful three months.

Magilton said: “I'm so pleased for Billy. He is a lovely lad who is desperate to be a player and would love to come back to us and score goals for us.

“He has scored nine goals and he is flying so we will take a view on him when we need to. We have not lost sight of him at all and I'm just pleased he has gone on loan and scored.

“He is a confidence player and it has worked for him.”

Another area Magilton is looking to add to is in defence and FA Cup winner Hreidarsson is out of contract with Portsmouth at the end of the season and has already been linked with Town, Charlton, West Brom.

But at 34 year's of age the Icelander would have to convince Magilton he is not just looking for a cushy run in towards retirement.

Magilton said: “Hermann is a terrific pro and a tremendous character. He was outstanding for us and someone who could help and use his quality around the football club but first I would need to know he is not thinking of retiring.”

There is a chance that one or two players may still leave or go out on loan although Charlton have not followed up initial interest in Iván Campo while Darren Ambrose remains a target.

Magilton added: “If we could prise one or two away then we would look to do that.

While contract talks with Alex Bruce continue many of the other dozen players out of contract next summer will have to wait until much nearer the end of the season before they find out if they will be offered anything.

Magilton said: “We won't be making contract decisions for many until April/May next year.”

derek.davis@eadt.co.uk