Robson ponders move for Richards

SIR BOBBY Robson may turn to another of Ipswich Town rising young stars to solve Newcastle United's left-back shortage, writes Derek Davis.The under-fire Magpies boss was impressed with Matt Richards even though he was part of a side that conceded three goals at Sunderland on Tuesday.

SIR BOBBY Robson may turn to another of Ipswich Town rising young stars to solve Newcastle United's left-back shortage, writes Derek Davis.

The under-fire Magpies boss was impressed with Matt Richards even though he was part of a side that conceded three goals at Sunderland on Tuesday.

North-East sources last night confirmed Robson's interest and admitted the left side of defence was an area Newcastle were looking to strengthen.

Richards would be used as cover for Olivier Bernard, who scored from a Kieron Dyer pass against Arsenal last Friday, and would play behind former Town team-mate Darren Ambrose, who went on as a substitute on the left flank at Highbury.


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It would not be the first time Newcastle have taken top talent from Portman Road, with Robson signing Titus Bramble and Ambrose, while Ruud Gullit bought Kieron Dyer, for a total of nearly £7m.

Robson is known to be a big fan of Darren Bent, who also got through a lot of work on Tuesday, but the Town striker has made it clear he is not interested in a move to Tyneside just yet.

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Blues boss Joe Royle last night confirmed no bid had come in from Newcastle United.

He also admitted he was keen to bring in a fourth loan signing but said: "It is something I'm certainly considering but nothing is on the cards just yet."

Meanwhile, Shefki Kuqi has confirmed he prefers to be available for Town's crucial encounter with Bradford City in nine days time rather than play for his country.

Kuqi has asked not to be involved in Finland's friendly with Canada on October 11, so he can play for Ipswich.

The loanee from Sheffield Wednesday added: "I love playing for my country as much as anyone but I feel I need to put my club first at this time.

"As things stand I'm only here for a short time and I don't want to miss any games. It is vital that I make an impression."

Kuqi is hoping for a permanent move, although if Sheffield Wednesday put an asking price on his head it may prove a deal-breaker.

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