Magilton looking to cut numbers

MORE Ipswich Town players will be moved on in the January sales than bought if manager Jim Magilton gets his way.

Derek Davis

MORE Ipswich Town players will be moved on in the January sales than bought if manager Jim Magilton gets his way.

The Blues boss admits he has no idea how busy the transfer window is going to be, but is looking to axe a number of his squad and get it down to an ideal 23.

Owner Marcus Evans has not set budgets and Magilton does not have to sell in order to buy but he does plan to wheel and deal in the winter transfer market that ahs been extended to Monday, February 2.

Magilton said: “We don't have to sell players to bring players in. In an ideal world I want to trim the squad to a 23-man squad that will carry us through.

“I would like two players for every position and provide real competition.

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“We have excess payers here at the moment with some young players and some at the older end of the scale.”

Although Town have struggled to crack the top six, Magilton has belief that his current squad can achieve promotion, with one or two top drawer additions.

He said: “We might strengthen in January but I like the way this squad is developing. We still have a long way to go but there is a lot more to come from this current squad.

“If they get on a run they will be hard to stop but they have to get on that run then we will make a judgement on players.”

Money remains no object for Magilton in the market with Evans apparently still willing to splash the cash, despite other cuts at Portman Road, including redundancies and a pay freeze for club staff.

Magilton said: “We have not talked budget and I don't know how much I have to spend. At the same time if I go to Marcus and say I think I have a very good player at a very good price then he would back me.

“If I say we have a player that can make a difference he has never let me down.

“I don't see what that will be any different in January and we are looking for the next player who can give us that extra quality.”

Given the current economic turmoil Magilton admits he is unsure how the market will move.

He said: “I understand that it is tight out there and football club could be strapped for cash. That said January could see movement because you can get players at bargain prices.

“That, or it could be quiet because clubs don't have the cash. We won't know that until we are in the middle of it.

“It is difficult to bring in players in January because they are expected to make an immediate impact.

“We need to make sure we have the right players to take the club forward.

“If there is better out there then we will go and get them and if people are good enough here we will keep them.

“We will have to wait until January before we make decisions.”

The danger is senior professionals such as Alex Bruce, Shane Supple, Tommy Miller or Richard Naylor will be induced away as town are not offering them a new contract as yet.

Magilton said: “If lads who are out of contract can find a club and get them to offer a contract then they can come here and use it as a negotiating tool.”

With Alex Bruce suspended, Naylor is likely to return at centre half, although Pim Balkestein is also pushing for a starting place.

David Norris and Moritz Volz both suffered dead legs on Wednesday but are expected to be fit with Ben Thatcher on stand by.

Town would overtake Cardiff City if they win and Magilton is expecting his players to rise to the challenge.

He said: “This will be a big test but I believe our players are ready for it. We have not lost at home since the end of August and we want to keep that run going.

“Cardiff play with plenty of width and will provide a real test for us.

“The way we went about our business on Wednesday was first class and we need to show that attitude again.

“The crowd got behind us after we went down and were great with us.

“They lifted us and we need that again. They have an impact on the players.”

Ipswich Town: R Wright, Supple, D Wright, Thatcher, Volz, Naylor, Balkestein, McAuley, Shumulikoski, Miller, Garvan, Quinn, Ambrose, Norris, Walters, Counago, Lisbie, Stead.

Cardiff City: Enckleman, Heaton, McNaughton, Rae, Purse, Gyepes, R Johnson, Comminges, Parry, Kennedy, Scimeca, Ledley, McPhail, Routledge, Chopra, Bothroyd, E Johnson.