Walters signs new deal

JON Walters is set to sign an extended four-year deal for Town

Derek Davis

EXCLUSIVE

By Derek Davis

JON Walters is going nowhere.

The Blues star is set to sign a new contract with Ipswich Town, keeping him at Portman Road until 2011 underlining his commitment to the club.

Despite interest from elsewhere, Ipswich have made it clear they don't want to sell him and Walters doesn't want to leave so it matters not a jot how many Premier League clubs are watching him.

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Walters is so happy and secure at Portman Road that he could even raise a smile through his sickness last week when he heard about the furore his absence against Portsmouth had created.

Although Walters was ill and could not play, rumours swept the message boards and airwaves that he was off having talks and would be leaving, all of which amused the Blues attacker.

He said: “I was told to stay away Saturday morning so no one else got it and stayed at home. It did amuse me when I heard all the rumours but I knew when I sick on Saturday morning and couldn't make the match there would be some sort of wild speculation.

“That was bound to happen but of course there was never any truth in any of it at all. I'm completely happy at Ipswich and settled.”

Walters signed from Chester City almost a year ago for bargain £100,000 and his nine goals from the flanks this season has alerted a clutch of Premiership clubs including Everton, Wigan, Birmingham City.

But as much as Walters would like to return to a Premiership club, he started out at Blackburn, he is no rush to uproot his young family after years of being unsettled.

He said: “All I want to do is help Ipswich get to where they want to be. Of course I want to play in the Premier League but I'm patient enough to wait. I still have a lot to learn and this club has all the facilities I need to improve myself on the training ground day in day out.

“I will continue to work on what I need to do every day.

“The other big factor is I'm extremely happy here and completely settled. When a player is happy it shows on the football pitch and you look forward to going to work every day.”

Like everyone at Town Walters is especially happy with the home comforts and an unbeaten run of 17 home league game stretching back to last March, with 11 wins and two draws in the 13 Championship games this season, helps a lot.

Talking while looking down at the vast bubble covering the pitch ahead of today's game against Stoke, Walters said: “It is a joy to play at Portman Road. The surface is fantastic and the fans are brilliant and the home record is excellent.

“We do have this feeling of invincibility at home and if only we could take that away with us.

“Every team that comes here is on the back foot because of our home record.

“We know Stoke will come here and it will be battle for the first 20 minutes, as it always is. With the smallest player about 6'2' we know it will be physical but we will want to get the ball down because we know that we can pick any team apart in this league and that is what we will be looking to do.

“They will say they won't have Newcastle at the back of their minds but I'm sure they will do, they won't be able to help it. They will all want to be involved at Newcastle because it is such a massive game for them so it may distract them.”

Now completely recovered from the bug Walters is looking for his tenth goal of the season to leave Stoke feeling sick.

derek.davis@archant.co.uk