Luc to the future, says Jim

IPSWICH Town fans should not expect to see the best of new signing Luciano Civelli for some weeks yet.

Elvin King

IPSWICH Town fans should not expect to see the best of new signing Luciano Civelli for some weeks yet.

So warned Blues manager Jim Magilton, who paid a reported �1million to bring the 22-year-old Argentinean left-sided player to Portman Road last week.

He doesn't expect his new man to give the Blues' promotion hopes an immediate boost.

Civelli, who was signed from Buenos Aires-based Club Atletico Banfield and was Town's only transfer window signing, has not played a game for six weeks.

It was a mid-season break in his home country, and Civelli was wrapped in cotton wool by his former club when their players returned to training.

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They did not want him injured and lose out on the transfer fee Town were prepared to pay.

Civelli was restricted to fitness work, and had not done any ball work for several weeks until he reported to Ipswich's Playford Road training ground.

“We won't see Luciano at full pelt until later in the season,” said Magilton. “He has not played for six weeks and needs to return to match fitness.”

The Argentinean is not expected to be in the squad that travels to south Wales for Saturday's Coca-Cola Championship match at in-form Swansea.

He may possibly be in line for a place on the bench at home to Blackpool seven days later, but Town fans must not expect too much too soon from the player who is to wear the number 13 shirt.

Despite the closure of the transfer window, Magilton is still looking to loan out his younger fringe players.

Midfielder Jai Reason, one of 14 players on Town's books whose contract expires in June, is joining Blue Square Premier Cambridge United on trial.

“Jai needs to be taking the next step in his development and that means playing first-team football,” said Magilton. “He is going to Cambridge and we will see how he gets on.”

The 19-year-old had a trial at York City earlier in the season, but nothing came of it. Liam Trotter could go out on loan when temporary deals can be done again from next week.

And two players with considerable first-team experience could also be joining the Town loan exits.

Matt Richards, with over 150 senior appearances and still only 24, is unlikely to have a new contract offered in the summer as he has featured only once in the final Town squad in the last two seasons.

He has had an extensive loan period at Brighton, but is currently back with Town and captaining the reserves. Goalkeeper Shane Supple would also appreciate the chance of regular football, and if Magilton can bring in a deputy keeper in his place, the 21-year-old could well be loaned out in the next few weeks.