Players are right behind Jim - De Vos

SKIPPER Jason De Vos today made it clear that Ipswich Town players are right behind Jim Magilton.The manager is expecting some opposition for recalling his squad from their summer break next Tuesday.

By Elvin King

SKIPPER Jason De Vos today made it clear that Ipswich Town players are right behind Jim Magilton.

The manager is expecting some opposition for recalling his squad from their summer break next Tuesday.

This reduces the close season by at least a fortnight on previous years.

But De Vos is anticipating a fully committed squad of players reporting to the training ground next week.

The Canadian international said: “If football players do not find something to moan about then there is something wrong.

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“Deep down we are very excited about the season ahead.

“Initially, there may have been some who were sceptical, but having spoken to the manager, fitness coach and physios we can see where the manager is coming from.

“It is a players' worst nightmare to pick up an injury pre-season, and by starting back early we can stretch things out.

“The first two weeks are normally the hardest time of the year for professional footballers with an intensive period of leg work.

“We feel like pioneers, and can see the benefits of returning earlier than usual.

“Everything is being aimed to reach peak fitness when the first ball is kicked in earnest on August 11.”

De Vos, who spent two weeks with his family in Canada last month, will be joining in with the rest of his team mates after making a good recovery from the foot operation he underwent last April.

“I have been running for a few weeks now,” added De Vos. “But with the first pre-season game not until early next month there is no rush.”

Magilton said: “I am sure there will be a few moans and groans, and if I'd still been a player here I probably would have been one of the ones moaning!

“But the switch is designed to ease players back into training.

“My plan is to do three days training, four days off for the first three weeks and then take it from there.”

The squad will have a week off next month when they will be free to spend time with their families and go on holiday.

“This certainly never happened in my time as a player,” added Magilton. “There were times when I would have appreciated a break.

“The extra time also gives us more opportunities to sit down and talk to the players about last season - what was right and what was wrong - and what we want from them in 2007/08.”

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