Mowbray offered new Town deal

TONY Mowbray has been offered a new deal to keep him with Ipswich Town as part of the coaching staff, writes Derek Davis.The popular coach and former Town star was thought to be surplus to requirements at Portman Road as Blues boss Joe Royle looks to cut the wage bill but he revealed last night that Mowbray was very much part of his plans.

TONY Mowbray has been offered a new deal to keep him with Ipswich Town as part of the coaching staff, writes Derek Davis.

The popular coach and former Town star was thought to be surplus to requirements at Portman Road as Blues boss Joe Royle looks to cut the wage bill but he revealed last night that Mowbray was very much part of his plans.

Royle said: "I spoke to Tony last Friday and asked him to stay on as assistant first-team coach. He has been an immense help to myself and Willie since we have been here.

"He is highly respected throughout the game and his close relationship with the players and his knowledge of the game have been beneficial and I have been delighted with his input. We would very much like to keep him."


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Mowbray was caretaker manager following George Burley's sacking days after Town's 3-0 defeat at Grimsby in October.

He made no secret that he wanted to step into management and his deep affection for the club and coaching ability made him a strong candidate but after a win, draw and two defeats during Mowbray's interim period, Royle was appointed and also brought in his assistant Willie Donachie.

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The former Middlesbrough and Celtic defender still has a desire to move into management but is still a big favourite among staff, players and supporters alike at Portman Road.

Royle said: "I have nothing but admiration for Mogga, it could not have been easy for him but he handled a difficult situation very well. We all three get on very well and hopefully he will stay.

"Equally I appreciate that he has ambition to get into management himself one day and I will understand if later, rather than sooner, he turns round and says he has an opportunity elsewhere."

Mowbray etched his name into Ipswich history with a superbly taken headed goal to open the scoring at Wembley as Town beat Barnsley 4-2 and won promotion to the Premiership in May 2000.

He packed in playing but remained as a coach, becoming George Burley's right-hand man as they plotted their course to a fifth-place Premiership finish and a place in the UEFA Cup the following season.

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