Saints give permission for Webster to go

MALCOLM Webster has been told Southampton will not stand in his way if he is offered the goalkeeping coach's role at Ipswich Town.The Saints have released manager Nigel Pearson, who has been replaced by Dutchman Jan Poortvliet, who played for Holland in the 1978 World Cup final.

Derek Davis

MALCOLM Webster has been told Southampton will not stand in his way if he is offered the goalkeeping coach's role at Ipswich Town.

The Saints have released manager Nigel Pearson, who has been replaced by Dutchman Jan Poortvliet, who played for Holland in the 1978 World Cup final.

Poortvliet, who has never worked in England, will head up a four-man coaching team that also includes another Dutchman, Mark Wotte, as well as current Saints Academy coach David Hockaday and St Mary's reserve team boss Stewart Henderson.


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Pearson, who only joined Southampton in mid-February, leaves after just 14 games in charge.

He was hailed a hero after Saints dramatically avoided relegation from the Championship earlier this month by beating Sheffield United 3-2 at St Mary's on the last day of the season.

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The great escape was influenced largely by the arrival on loan of goalkeeper Richard Wright for the inured Kelvin Davis

Wright was brought in by Webster, who has been contacted by Ipswich Town about the goalkeeping coach's job, made available after Andy Rhodes' departure.

Former Town youngster and Norwich City coach James Holman is also believed to have been interviewed about the vacancy.

Former England keeper Wright is being linked with West Brom and is understood to be considering a move away from West Ham in order to gain regular first team football.

After being reluctant to step down from the Premier League Wright may consider a move to the Championship with Ipswich keen to bring in a new keeper, or two.

The Blues have not offered Stephen Bywater a permanent deal after he arrived on loan from Derby at the end of January.

Bywater has been told he can leave Pride Park with Roy Carroll and Lewis Price ahead of him in Paul Jewell's set-up.

Town keeper Shane Supple has made it clear he would be happy to return to Falkirk on a full-time basis and play in the SPL if he is not part of Magilton's plans and the Town boss has yet to sort out the Irish Under-21 keeper's future.

Town winger Jaime Peters' international experience will be enhanced this week when he lines up for Canada against Brazil in a friendly.

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