Royle targets England defender

ENGLAND defender Chris Powell is among the loan targets being sought by Ipswich boss Joe Royle this week.Royle faces competition from West Ham and Millwall to land the Charlton left-back who has found his opportunities limited at The Valley.

ENGLAND defender Chris Powell is among the loan targets being sought by Ipswich boss Joe Royle this week, writes Derek Davis.

Royle faces competition from West Ham and Millwall to land the Charlton left-back who has found his opportunities limited at The Valley.

Powell, who was surprisingly called into the England team when Sven Goran-Eriksson took over and awarded him five caps, has struggled for form in the past year. Addicks boss Alan Curbishley, who is today smarting after another early exit from the FA Cup by lowly opposition, recently recalled fellow defender Paul Konchesky from a loan spell at Spurs.

But 34-year-old Powell has made more than 200 appearances for Charlton since signing for £800,00 from Derby County five years ago and would strengthen a Town defence, which has managed just four clean sheets in the league this season.


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With Chris Makin still at least a month away from playing and Drissa Diallo a couple more weeks, defence is one area Royle has looked at improving.

Royle have asked about Powell's availability and has also made enquiries about a couple of other players, with a Premiership midfielder another target.

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The Blues did manage to stay firm at the back on Saturday as they beat Derby County 3-0 with second half goals from Richard Naylor, Tommy Miller and Shefki Kuqi.

A double substitution with Jim Magilton and Shefki Kuqi going on swung the game Town's way.

Royle said: "I did not want to use Jim at all. I had it in my mind to give him a full game's rest but it was obvious early on we needed some order in midfield and Jim gives us that.

"He was okay about it as he knew it was a rest and no more than that. Had we won the game without him he would still have been in the team against Reading [away, next Saturday] anyway as he is important to us. I was aware that he has played in virtually every game this season and needed a break.

"But we were missing his quality and he showed what a terrific player he is when he came on. He stretched their defence with his passing."

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