Portsmouth bid for Leadbitter rejected

IPSWICH Town manager Paul Jewell says he has rejected a bid from Portsmouth for skipper Grant Leadbitter over the weekend – but refused to rule out selling his midfielder before the end of the transfer window.

Leadbitter told the EADT after Saturday’s 1-0 home defeat to Hull that he was happy at the club and ready to sit down and discuss a new contract with Jewell this week.

The midfielder – who is in the final year of his contract – wasn’t aware of a bid at that stage though.

“We’ve turned down an offer from Portsmouth and Grant knows that,” said Jewell.

“We will make him an offer of a new contract and we want him to stay at the club for years to come, but if that offer isn’t acceptable to him then we’ll have do something about it.

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“If he is not particularly enamoured with our offer then we would have to look to sell him because we don’t want a repeat of what’s just happened with David Norris and Gareth McAuley (both left on Bosman free transfers to Portsmouth and West Brom respectively this summer at the end of their contracts).

“We certainly don’t want to sell him though and he seems happy, so we’ll see how talks go.

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“We’ve had honest conversations and he knows I don’t want another Chuck (Norris) and McAuley situation.

“He’s getting married in the summer so he obviously wants to get his future sorted out too.

“As I say, he seems happy here, but maybe he’s got Chuck (Norris) blowing in his ear? I don’t know.

““He’s a good player, a good passer of the ball, and I’m not surprised that Portsmouth are interested. In fact, I’m surprised no-one else has been in for him.”

The Liverpudlian, who admitted the search still goes on for a centre-back, continued: “I don’t even know how much the bid is to be honest, it certainly isn’t mind blowing otherwise I’d have heard about it.

“I want to get this sorted out soon because once the window passes and you get to January it becomes difficult to keep players that are heading towards the end of their contracts because they are then open to other offers.”

– Keep an eye on this website throughout the day for all the latest Ipswich Town news.

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