Klug bullish about Town's prospects

BULLISH Bryan Klug has faith that the Blues players can make a rapid climb up the table as they become more used to each other.

By Derek Davis

BULLISH Bryan Klug has faith that the Blues players can make a rapid climb up the table as they become more used to each other.

The Ipswich Town first team coach has been helping to plot Swansea's downfall at Portman Road on Saturday as Town look to repeat their success on the first weekend back from an international break.

Klug was instrumental in helping the Blues to a 2-0 win over Reading last month and has belief that the recently-assembled squad can repeat that and go on to be serious contenders once more.

Town are unbeaten in three home games but the defeat at Charlton leaves them just seventh from bottom of the Championship, which Klug believes is a false position.

Klug said: “We are much better than 17th. The players believe that and in the league we are in, 17th is just three points away from sixth place so we can soon push up the table.

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“We know we have not got the points we should have but I believe in the players and the squad is getting stronger all the time.

“The players are beginning to get to know each other and hopefully over the next six games we will pick up the points we should and carry that on for the rest of the season.”

The former Academy director is still a firm believe in bringing players through the system and watched Jordan Rhodes net twice in the reserves' win over Southend United on Tuesday but admits he may benefit from another loan spell away from Portman Road.

Klug said: “Jordan is a wonderful player and a great prospect but he needs regular football. He needs testing and challenging and that is the reason we sent him on loan.

“He has had a good month at Rochdale where he learnt a lot and improved his game.

“Jordan is never far from Jim's thoughts but at the moment it is better for him to be playing than being on the fringe of the squad, and that goes for others who are out on loan.

“We send them to situations that hopefully will improve their game. For example, we have sent Liam to Grimsby which is a tough place to be at the moment but that is exactly what he needs to toughen up his game.

“We monitor them and talk to the managers and see how they are doing and what they are doing in training.”

Trotter will be staying at Grimsby for another month after Ipswich agreed to extend the loan period for Mariners new boss Mike Newell who has been impressed by the 20-year-old.

Newell said: “We are signing Liam for another month because we think he has quality and there is a lot more to come from him.”

Another youngster making strides is Kurt Robinson and he has an outside chance of getting a call into the squad for Saturday's game against Swansea with skipper Gareth McAuley an injury doubt along with Alex Bruce.

Both players returned from international duty as doubts with Bruce suffering an abductor strain but hopeful of being involved, while McAuley has a hamstring worry that will be further screened today.

Pim Balkestein went off at half time against Southend as a precaution after feeling the groin problem that has been bothering him of late.

Ben Thatcher, with a torn thigh muscle and Tommy Smith with a fractured ankle have definitely been ruled out.

Tommy Miller has been recovering from a hip injury he picked up in the loss at Charlton while Moritz Volz and David Norris have got over slight niggles.