Medal joy for Town duo

BLUES duo Billy Clarke and Jordan Rhodes have been awarded Championship medals after helping Brentford to the League Two title.

Derek Davis

BLUES duo Billy Clarke and Jordan Rhodes have been awarded Championship medals after helping Brentford to the League Two title.

Between them the Ipswich Town strikers knocked in 13 goals during their loan spells at Griffin Park and the Bees secured the title at Darlington with Clarke bagging a brace.

So popular were the pair that they have both been invited to join the Brentford squad for the post-season party in Las Vegas, given to them as a reward by manager Andy Scott, with Clarke due to fly out with them on Sunday, although a broken bone in a foot may prevent Rhodes joining them.

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Rhodes scored eight goals in 13 appearances for the Bees, winning the PFA Fan's Player of the Year for League Two after also scoring twice for Rochdale while on loan.

He also became becoming Brentford's youngest ever triple scorer at 18-years of age, after netting with left and right foot and his head for a genuine hat-trick against Shrewsbury.

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Clarke put away six crucial goals in eight games for the Bees, and took his personal tally to 18 in 33 games for the season in three loan spells.

The 21-year-old banged in nine in 20 games for Darlington then three in five for Northampton before his success at Griffin Park.

Told by Jim Magilton he was no longer wanted at Portman Road, the young Irishman will find out this week if new Blues boss Roy Keane is offering him a new contract with his current deal expiring at the end of next month.

If Keane doesn't want to keep his fellow Cork man, then Clarke has already attracted a lot of interest with Brentford first in the queue.

The Bees' head of communications Phil Gilham said: “Both Billy and Jordan have received League Two title winning medals for their part in our success in finishing as champions.

“They have both contributed largely and we are very grateful to Ipswich Town for the co-operation and help they have given us in loaning us players.

“Not only did Jordan and Billy do the business for us on the pitch they were lovely lads off it.

“They fitted in very well and were very professional and likable off the pitch too.”

Dean Bowditch, who made nine appearances for Brentford, scoring twice, did not qualify for a medal, and he faces an uncertain future at Ipswich after making just two brief substitute appearances this season.

Two other Town players out on loan could also end up with a promotion medal.

Dan Harding is now playing regularly at left back for Reading, who take on Burnley in the Championship play-off semi-finals, while Liam Trotter is looking to help Scunthorpe United bounce back into the second tier, starting with a two-legged semi against MK Dons.

Richard Naylor, who left Town in January to join Leeds United, is also hoping for a return to the Championship but first must overcome Millwall for the chance to meet the winners between Scunthorpe and MK Dons.

Jai Reason, who has been allowed to join Cambridge United from Town, has a Wembley final to look forward to after the Blue Square Premier club beat Stevenage and now face Torquay in their play-off final on Sunday week.

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