Now Man U star interests Keane

ROY Keane has offered a clue as to the type of players he is looking to bring into Ipswich Town.

Derek Davis

ROY Keane has offered a clue as to the type of players he is looking to bring into Ipswich Town.

With Manchester United's Lee Martin, Celtic's Bobo Balde and Sunderland's David Healy high on the list of players he is believed to be keen in, the Blues boss has underlined their potential as new signings.

Keane said: “It might be players that I have managed before, players that have been in the opposition when I've been a manager or maybe players that I have played with.”

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With Keane known to be after at least one striker, a left sided midfielder, an experienced defender and a pacy central midfielder, he and chief executive Simon Clegg are going to be busy trying to land who he wants amid strong competition.

Keane said: “Hopefully, it will be an interesting summer for the club. It will be big one and, if we can do a deal with the players I want, then great. If not, then we will back away and be patient.”

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While speculation may be rife with a number of players linked with Town, Keane insists he will not just bring in someone for the sake of it and only three or four will be added to a squad he sees has promotion potential.

He said: “It's important to get the right characters in. That's the main thing. There are some talented players here already and I've been pleasantly surprised but we need a bit more to have a chance of getting out of this league."

It appears Manchester United's 22-year-old winger Martin will fit that bill.

After spells with Royal Antwerp, Stoke City, Rangers, Plymouth Argyle, Sheffield United and Nottingham Forest, Sir Alex Ferguson has made it clear he will not loan Martin out again but would be willing to sell and a fee of around �1.5m is probably the going rate.

Martin cost United �200,000 up front when they bought him from Wimbledon in December 2003, and other bonuses up to �1m were negotiated depending on progress.

Other United players Keane will be well aware off include James Chester, who picked up the Reserves' player of the Year on Sunday night at a glittering ceremony.

The tough-tackling, 20-year-old central defender was on loan last season for a month at Peterborough and has a Keane-like approach to the game.

Midfielder Tom Cleverley is another highly rated at Old Trafford and impressed on loan at Leicester City and helped in their promotion campaign before a shoulder injury.

The midfielder was called up by England U-20 just before he got injured. Former Manchester United striker David Healy is also well known to Keane from his days at Old Trafford and after signing him for Sunderland from Fulham for Sunderland.

Keane also played in the same Celtic side as Balde, the Frenchman who never kicked a ball in anger this season after a fall out with the SPL side.

Ipswich have also been linked with Celtic target James McCarthy but the Hamilton star is likely to stay in Scotland or if he is tempted to England will join a Premier League side.

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