TRANSFER LATEST: Derby County boss Nigel Clough expects Steve Davies sale to go through

IPSWICH Town top striking target Steve Davies could rejoin Paul Jewell in a matter of days.

For the second successive friendly, Derby County boss Nigel Clough has opted against picking last season’s top scorer – Davies will miss today’s match with Burton Albion.

And a source near to the Rams boss admits Clough doesn’t want to risk Davies getting injured when a move is so close.

Ipswich remain in pole position and while Clough himself would not discuss teams, he did admit yesterday: “We keep saying this, but there might be something in place in the next few days.

“I do expect something to happen but it is just a case of when.”

Town have always led the chase for the 24-year-old, who has scored 21 goals in 49 league starts since Jewell signed him for Derby from Tranmere four years ago.

Against that impressive scoring tally is Davies’ cruel run of injuries which have included a hairline fracture to his foot, ankle surgery, cruciate ligament damage and a fractured skill which left him with 10 metal plates in his head. In all, he had six operations in three years at Pride Park.

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But last year, he made 27 appearances, scoring 12 goals, and he has remained in training with Derby this summer despite not signing a new deal at the end of last season.

Davies made no secret of the fact he wanted to move south for family reasons and, despite entering the last year of his contract, Clough has refused to let him go on the cheap.

With Jewell equally adept at playing hardball during the negotiations, a interesting game of cat-and-mouse has been played out between the two managers.

Derby wanted close to �1 million for the striker but with the Blues boss only offering around half that figure, it appears a compromise has finally been reached.

With Clough predicting a conclusion in a matter of days, it could be that Davies will make his debut against West Ham next Saturday.

* Jewell is expected to speak about Davies after this afternoon’s friendly at Luton Town. Keep checking this website for further updates.