No place in squad for Counago

IPSWICH Town might be short of numbers, especially in terms of strikers, but Pablo Counago will not be in the squad bound for Teesside.

Manager Roy Keane has made it known, in no uncertain terms, that Counago would not feature against Middlesbrough tomorrow.

And that’s despite Connor Wickham’s absence through a foot injury, and the summer departures of loaness Daryl Murphy and David Healy, plus Kevin Lisbie’s loan switch to Millwall.

Counago’s days at Portman Road certainly look to be numbered. The Spaniard is on the transfer list and off Keane’s radar.

“Pablo won’t be involved this weekend,” insisted Keane.

“He’s not injured. It’s just from what I see on the training pitch everyday, and what I see at matches.

“I judge my players on what I see on the training pitch, and just like when I’m buying a house, I judge by my eyes, not what the house looked like two or three years ago.

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“It’s about players’ attitudes, their desire to do well, their hunger to train, their passion for the game, and their heart.

“So he (Pablo) won’t be available this weekend,” added Keane.

Meanwhile, fellow front-man Wickham is hoping to be back quicker than the expected initial estimate of six weeks, following his ankle injury sustained in training last week.

Keane revealed: “Particularly with regards the younger players, if someone says six or seven weeks, then I try and knock a week off that straight away.

“Connor is away in Spain at the moment with his parents. He’s had a week off and hopefully he’ll come back from there feeling a lot better, and with a tan! He should also have had a bit of salt water on his foot. We might be able to knock a week or two off that, but without being daft.

“Connor probably needed the extra break anyway, having been away with England (Under-17s) at the end of the season. Sometimes it’s no bad thing because the expectations surrounding Connor are still a bit too high.

“The fact that he’s injured just puts the onus a bit more on Carlos (Edwards), Tamas (Priskin), Steady (Stead) and these sort of players.”

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