Lee Martin and Danny Higginbotham talks on hold as Paul Jewell focuses on quick fix
IPSWICH Town manager Paul Jewell says his team must first get away from the foot of the Championship table before he starts discussing the long-term futures of his players.
Lee Martin – the most high-profile of 10 players now in the final year of their contracts at Portman Road – revealed earlier this week that the club was yet to begin negotiations over a new deal, despite the fact the midfielder has made it public he wants to stay.
And having impressed in his first two games for the club, experienced Stoke City loanee Danny Higginbotham has indicated that he would be open to the idea of staying a lot longer than the one-month deal he was signed.
However, having signed 32-year-old Leicester City midfielder Richie Wellens on another short-term one-month loan deal last night, under-pressure Jewell – whose side are just a point above rock-bottom Peterborough United after nine league games – says his focus is solely on the short-term for now.
With Stoke boss Tony Pulis saying he would not stand in the way of Higginbotham making a longer-term switch, Jewell said: “Danny has done really well and is enjoying it here, but he knows there is a lot more going on at the football club than just personal situations. All I am focusing on is getting a few results, then I can start looking at personal situations.”
And when quizzed about Martin, he added: “I have had other things on my mind. I understand Lee’s situation and I have left that for Simon (Clegg) and Marcus (Evans) to deal with.
“I understand people have got their own personal situations, but at the moment I am just trying to get results so we can get up the table.”
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He added: “It was a long-term project when I came here and we didn’t want to keep bringing loans in, but we’ve had to for the short-term just to get us our of this sticky situation we’re in.”