Waiting game for Ipswich over signings

BLUES fans will have to wait a little longer for the arrival of Richard Wright and Francis Jeffers, as obstacles have still to be overcome with both players.

By Derek Davis

BLUES fans will have to wait a little longer for the arrival of Richard Wright and Francis Jeffers, as obstacles have still to be overcome with both players.

Wright, who was released by Everton on Monday, is away on his summer break considering his future after receiving a number of offers.

And the EADT understands Blackburn have a highly inflated valuation of former Arsenal and Everton striker Jeffers.

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Ipswich Town chairman David Sheepshanks last night confirmed that initial talks have been held with Wright and is hopeful that the keeper will choose his hometown club.

Glasgow Rangers are among a number of clubs linked with an interest to Wright, who has played just twice for the Toffeemen this season - a League Cup win over Peterborough and in the Premiership against Manchester United - but has not appeared since November. Playing regular first team football is thought to be a big factor in Wright's thinking as the 29-year-old chooses his next club.

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Sheepshanks said: “We have had a discussion with Richard Wright and he has gone on holiday to review his options.

“When a player is released on a free transfer then the remuneration package has to be right for the player but it is also about which club the player wants to go to. We could not compete with a Rangers financially for example but there are many other factors for a player to consider and we hope Richard wants to come back to us.”

Sheepshanks also revealed that he was still negotiating with Blackburn for Francis Jeffers but nothing was likely to happen this week.

He said: “We are still in discussions with Blackburn Rovers but it is not likely that anything will be resolved this week. I can say no more than that at the moment.”

It is believed Rovers are asking in the region of £1million for Jeffers after initial indications were that he could leave for a nominal fee.

Although the price tag would be restrictive for the Blues, it is clear Jeffers wants to join Ipswich, where he scored four goals in nine appearances, and Rovers are happy to let him go so a satisfactory solution for all parties is still possible.

Sheepshanks dismissed rumours that Burnley are keen to sign Lewis Price, who last month told the EADT, he would seek to leave the Blues if Wright signed and confirmed that no clubs have inquired about the Wales keeper.

The Blues have had no firm offers about any of their players so far, although it is understood that transfer-listed Sito Castro is attracting interest in Spain and England, while Scott Barron, who has had the remaining year of his contract paid up, is wanted by Wrexham and Rushden & Diamonds.

Although Titus Bramble, another former Town player who was released by Newcastle yesterday, has been linked with Ipswich it is more likely he will be joining either; Portsmouth, Aston Villa or Birmingham City during the summer.

Charlton duo Matt Holland and Hermann Hreidarsson are at the end of their contracts with the former Town skipper expected to sign a new one-year deal while the Icelander could be on his way to West Ham or Colchester United.

And finally, Justin Miller, the Premier Reserve league-winning skipper under the late Dale Roberts, has joined League One side Port Vale from Leyton Orient.

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