Mick McCarthy tells Michael Chopra and Jay Emmanuel-Thomas that they are up for sale
- Credit: Archant
IPSWICH Town manager Mick McCarthy will listen to offers for Michael Chopra and Jay Emmanuel-Thomas this summer as his Blues revolution gathers pace.
The duo watched from the stands as the Suffolk side finished their season with a 2-0 defeat at Burnley on Saturday, finishing a rollercoaster campaign 14th in the table.
And the EADT and Ipswich Star understands that the Blues boss has told the pair that he would like to cash in on them, should acceptable bids be received.
Arran Lee-Barrett and Andy Drury have both been told they will be released, while it’s understood that Lee Martin will also exit the club after rejecting the offer of significantly reduced terms.
Chopra, understood to be the club’s highest earner on £18,000 per week, has dropped down the strikers’ pecking order this season. The 29-year-old – whose goalscoring record was much trumpeted upon his £1m arrival from Cardiff City – has seen his two seasons at Portman Road blighted by a series of off-field controversies.
Having been the club’s top goalscorer (14) in his debut campaign at Portman Road, he has netted a disappointing five goals from 17 starts and 19 substitute appearances this season – albeit three of them proving important winners against Watford, Bolton and Blackpool.
Emmanuel-Thomas has been something of an enigma since arriving from Arsenal for a £1.1million. One of the most skilful attackers in the division, his work-rate has been questioned by successive managers and he has been limited to a bit-part role.
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The 22-year-old has made 13 starts and 19 sub appearances this season, scoring twice. His stock seemed to be on the rise in March when he produced some impressive cameos against Leicester, Bolton and Leeds, but that doesn’t look like it will be enough to convince McCarthy that he can fit into his hard graft approach to the game.
McCarthy turned down loan bids for both Chopra and Emmanuel-Thomas back in January and has always backed them publicly.
However, they are now entering the final year of their lucrative deals and, with Financial Fair Play rules coming into effect, the Blues boss knows he will need to sell if he wants to bring his top targets to Suffolk this summer.
The Blues are already understood to be closing in on Cole Skuse – the central midfielder out-of-contract at relegated Championship side Bristol City – as well as Notts County winger Alan Judge, the highly-rated Irishman having already said he is looking to move up from League One.
– What do you think? Should Chopra and Emmanuel-Thomas be sold to raise funds and lower the wage bill? Or could they come good next season? Post your comments below.