McAuley looking towards a new Ipswich contract

IPSWICH TOWN: Gareth McAuley today confirmed that he wants a new Blues contract.

The 30-year old has been playing some of the best football of his career; playing a leading part as Town have leapt to second place in the Championship table and into the fourth round of the Carling Cup.

The central defender will be a key player tomorrow when Ipswich look to extend their unbeaten away start to the season when they play Scunthorpe United at Glanford Park (kick-off 3pm).

His current contract runs out next summer, and Blues manager Roy Keane has already stressed that it is a priority to get the likes of McAuley, David Norris, Carlos Edwards and Damien Delaney to extend their current deals that run out in nine months time.

“I would definitely like to still be here next season,” said McAuley, whose admits that he still has a dream to play in the Premier League.

“But at the moment my focus is on the present rather the future, and there is no panic – no rush.

“I’m enjoying life both on and off the pitch and have no thoughts about leaving.

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“The grass is not always greener on the other side of the fence and if things are going well – as they are now – then the best advice is to stick with it.

“There is nothing happening contract-wise at the moment and I’m looking forward to getting on with what we are trying to achieve at Portman Road.

“When I left Northern Ireland the Premier League was my aim, and I would love to have a crack at it.

“It is still my dream.”

McAuley has changed his agent since he was linked with a move away from Ipswich 12 months ago.

“I had what I now consider to be the wrong people looking after me then,” added McAuley.

“People were trying to bend my ear and I was not really interested.

“An ideal agent is one who has the same thoughts as yourself.”

McAuley is in the Northern Ireland squad that takes on Italy at Windsor Park, Belfast on Friday October 8 and the Faroe Islands in Toftir the following Tuesday.

Ipswich will be ball number six in tomorrow’s lunchtime Carling Cup fourth round draw with fans hoping for a home tie after eight consecutive away cup games.

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