Town boost as David Norris set to agree new contract

AT last Ipswich Town fans have something to cheer about today with news that skipper David Norris is expected to agree a new contract.

Six consecutive league defeats have seen Town plunge down the Championship table to within three points of the drop zone.

Since a victory at Sheffield United on November 6 lifted Ipswich to sixth place on November 6 it has been all doom and gloom apart from a Carling Cup quarter-final home win over Premier League West Brom.

But now Norris has brought some festive joy to increasingly disgruntled Blues followers by declaring:

“Things are progressing fine.

“The club are in touch with my agent and I’m confident I will agree a new deal soon.

“It’s been in the back of mind and it would be nice to get it all cleared up.

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“I came here three years ago to do a job and help get Ipswich promoted.

“There is no way that I want to leave a failure – I want to do what I was brought here to do for this great club.”

Norris’ contract expires in the summer along with Gareth McAuley, Damien Delaney, Carlos Edwards and a good number of other less senior players.

And with the skipper nailing his colours to the mast by showing his faith in under-fire manager Roy Keane it is a big boost before the visit of Leicester City on Saturday and four games in 10 days over the Christmas period.

And Norris, who along with Gareth McAuley, Jack Colback and Arran Lee-Barrett spread some good cheer during their visit to St Elizabeth’s Hospice yesterday, went out of his way to stress that the players he leads in the dressing room are right behind their manager.

“We all get asked to do press and all the lads are saying the same things publicly and backing the manager,” added Norris.

“And if anybody has any doubts about the authenticity of this they only have to look at our recent games.

“No one can accuse us of not playing for our manager.

“The effort is genuine although the quality is missing at the moment.”

Norris and his team mates had their Christmas get-together in the North West after Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at bottom-placed Preston.

And the former Plymouth player revealed: “We had a number of discussions even inquests between ourselves and sought answers to how we can put things right and where we have been going wrong.

“It leaves a taste in mouth every time we lose and that is six games in a row now.

“It’s a tough time for everybody and there’s a lot of pressure out there, and the sooner we do it on the pitch the better it will be for everyone.

“We trained yesterday morning, but I have not seen the manager since the Preston game, but of course he’s disappointed.

“He wants to see us turn it around – and we haven’t.”

And reflecting on yesterday’s visit to the hospice, Norris added: “It was a humbling experience and we received a few pointers from them, which was great.

“Most of them have children who are Ipswich fans and they were telling us about their lives.”

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