Miller set for early return

TOMMY Miller will give Joe Royle's skimpy squad a boost this week as he returns from injury to face Brighton on Saturday.Miller may have to play with strapping to protect his left arm but his availability will be welcome news as another potential loan target slipped through Ipswich Town's fingers.

By Derek Davis

TOMMY Miller will give Joe Royle's skimpy squad a boost this week as he returns from injury to face Brighton on Saturday.

Miller may have to play with strapping to protect his left arm but his availability will be welcome news as another potential loan target slipped through Ipswich Town's fingers.

Crystal Palace's Shaun Derry signed for Leeds United in a £250,000 move, with the Blues and Nottingham Forest also in for the midfielder.


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Leeds manager Kevin Blackwell revealed he was delighted to sign Derry in face of competition from their Championship rivals.

Town's chances of landing the 27-year-old ended as soon as Leeds agreed to pay a fee, as they would only have taken him on loan.

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Blackwell said: “He's been involved in this division for a few years now and is a battler. He is a fierce competitor, while he is also powerful, strong and at 26 going on 27, he is coming up to the right age for a midfielder.

“I know he will give everything for us, which is why I'm pleased we have beaten off good competition in Ipswich and Nottingham Forest to sign him.”

The Blues missed out on Mauricio Taricco last week when he chose a permanent move to West Ham, despite Ipswich's interest.

Meanwhile, a young Blues reserves were unfortunate not to get anything from their game against Fulham at Portman Road last night as they went down 1-0.

The Blues were caught out by an early Elvis Hammond goal, which looked suspiciously like offside, as he tapped in from close range.

The lively Daniel Flack hit a dipping shot just over the bar and went close again when he latched on to another good through ball from Scott Mitchell and poked the ball past the advancing Ross Flitney.

Flack went close with a similar 18-yard effort early in the second half The young Fulham keeper was fortunate not to concede a penalty when he brought down Flack but the officials refused the strong appeals.

The fiery Flack scorned the best chance of the night though when he blazed a Liam Craig cross left-footed past the post from seven yards.

Flitney did well to push a fierce Antonio Murray drive over the bar as Ipswich worked hard for an equaliser.

Matt Richards hit a good free-kick over the wall but the keeper got down well to save at the base of a post.

Shane Supple made a good double save to deny Hammond and then Neale McDermott's follow-up.

Mitchell cleared off the line and made a terrific headed clearance but Town deserved a draw and Craig came close to finding it in time added on.

Town remain winless at home as they approach the halfway mark in the reserve league season but they will take heart from another more than decent team performance.

Ipswich Town: Supple, Atay (Synott, 72), Richards, Mitchell, Collins, Hogg (Patten, 90), Murray, Manning, Knights (Leabon, 72), Craig and Flack. Subs not used: Garvan and Sobers.

Fulham: Flitney, Rosenior, Green, Pearce, Fontaine, McKinlay, Buari, McDermott, Hammond, Lawless (Noble, 65), and Doherty. Subs not used: Watkins, Milsom and Collins.

Referee: S Beck.

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