Owen not looking to leave Town

OWEN Garvan has ended speculation that he has refused to sign a new deal with Ipswich Town.The 17-year-old Irishman is ready to make his first-team comeback today after a two-month injury lay-off and is more than happy with how things are going for him at Portman Road.

By Derek Davis

OWEN Garvan has ended speculation that he has refused to sign a new deal with Ipswich Town.

The 17-year-old Irishman is ready to make his first-team comeback today after a two-month injury lay-off and is more than happy with how things are going for him at Portman Road.

Garvan has 18-months left on his current deal and there is little doubt he will be offered a new deal by his 18th birthday next month but it is not something that has concerned him.

Garvan said: “I have this and the next season and I'm happy with that. I have not asked for anything longer and they have not offered anything longer and I'm fine with that at the moment.

“I just want to play football and everything else will take care of itself. I still feel I need to improve when I am back in the first team, and play better than I did at the start of the season, and push forward.”

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The Dubliner is hungry to carry on his footballing education at Ipswich and, while he is ambitious, Garvan is also learning to be patient and taking a leaf out of his idol Roy Keane's book.

He said: “Roy Keane is a great player and, like all great players, you look up to them.

“I'm nowhere near Roy Keane's standard, on or off pitch, but, like him, all I want to do is play football then go home and relax.”

Garvan was making rapid progress in the first team until an ankle injury, picked up in the 2-2 draw against Coventry City in mid-October, knocked him back and a premature return set him back further.

But, with an FA Youth Cup match at Leeds United and a couple of reserve outings under his belt, Garvan feels ready to get back into the thick of things.

He said: “The ankle is coming on fine. I have been training hard and I have played for the youth team and reserves so I have come through well and my fitness is better now.

“It was hard mentally to deal with because I had only played a few games for the first team before I got injured and, as a footballer, you want to play every game but these things happen and you have to get on with it.

“Hopefully, I will come back stronger and then, when the chance comes to get back into the team, you do well and stay injury-free.

“There are a lot of games over the Christmas period so I like to think I will get to play and, once I get in, I hope the gaffer keeps me in.”

Garvan has used the enforced break to develop physically and mentally and has also studied other aspects of the game.

He said: “I feel stronger physically and mentally. I stayed positive all the way through and worked hard building myself up.

“I was watching closely while I was not playing, picking up bits here and there, and learning more about different players, on our team and the opposition.”

After being on the bench in the 1-0 win at Sheffield Wednesday, Garvan is hoping he can force his way back in the side and stay there.

He added: “I will show even more passion and desire once I'm back in because I know there are players capable of playing in my position, so I want to get back in and stay in.

“I'm very passionate about my football and the whole way I was brought up was to play with passion and enthusiasm.”

With so many games in such a short period of time, Garvan knows everyone will be needed, but he also knows this is a terrific opportunity for Town to bound up the table.

He said: “These four games are extremely important, especially as they are in such a short period of time.

“Teams are going to drop points so it is up to us to capitalise on that. We know we have a tough January too, so it is vital that we get as many points as we can over the next week.”

Garvan's inclusion will attract more than the usual amount of Premiership scouts to today's game, with a number of clubs showing an interest in the prodigious youngster.

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