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TEAM NEWS: No injury problems for Ipswich as Danny Higginbotham leaves Town

PUBLISHED: 14:28 31 December 2012 | UPDATED: 15:19 31 December 2012

Danny Higginbotham

Danny Higginbotham

Copyright Ashley Pickering

Ipswich v Brighton: Mick McCarthy has a fully-fit squad to choose from for tomorrow’s visit of Brighton.

The one exception is Stoke City loan defender Danny Higginbotham who has backtracked on initial plans to sign an extended deal at Portman Road.

McCarthy revealed that the experienced stopper, benched in recent weeks, is set to join an unnamed club on loan, with a view to a permanent deal.

That leaves the Blues with the precarious scenario of having just two recognised centre-backs in their squad – Luke Chambers and Tommy Smith.

While McCarthy looks to rectify that as quickly as possible, he will be wanting to end Town’s impressive festive programme with three points at Portman Road.

While two back-to-back away wins would have taken their toll, McCarthy is considering whether to name an unchanged side for the sixth consecutive match.

He said: “Andy Liddell (Town’s fitness coach) and the players themselves should be given a mention. They have kept themselves fit and been remarkable.

“The dilemma is whether I think they might have run out of legs while Brighton have had a game less.

“I could change it, something goes wrong, and I would regret it. Or I could keep it the same, something goes wrong, and I regret it. You will find out tomorrow.”

Speaking on Higginbotham, he added: “I don’t think he’s going to stay, I think he’s going to go elsewhere.

“We’d hoped to extend it, but it was always on the understanding that if something better came along – not necessarily a better club, but something geographically better and a club where he would be playing – then we would let him go with our blessing.

“There is nothing I can do about that, it’s his choice. I’ll be looking to strengthen that area of the team.”

– See tomorrow’s EADT and Ipswich Star for full match preview.

1 comment

  • Always keep a winning team, and MM has got a bench of subs anyway. As for Higginbotham, let him go, don't need him, he's no McAuley.

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    JOHN BURLS

    Monday, December 31, 2012

It’s been a relief somewhat to not have to worry about the thought of an Ipswich game over the weekend and for someone that really dislikes a blank weekend because on an international break, it’s an indication of how bad things are right now.

It’s been a dismal season for Ipswich Town fans and it could yet get worse.

Ipswich may have broken out of their run of straight draws – but a 3-1 defeat isn’t really much to shout about.

Ipswich Town defender Tommy Smith has told a newspaper in New Zealand that he is 100% committed to playing for the national team, ahead of the All Whites’ World Cup qualifiers against Fiji.

With eight games to go, Ipswich Town are still not safe from relegation to League One, following a tough season in the Championship, and lost 3-1 at Cardiff City at the weekend.

Mick McCarthy says his managerial record is the reason for his longevity at Portman Road, not owner Marcus Evans’ perceived patience with his managers.

Ipswich Town will not be backtracking on their decision to raise the price of season tickets, despite a huge outcry from supporters.

Loan duo Dominic Samuel and Jonny Williams made timely injury comebacks last night as a strong Ipswich Town Under-23 side drew 1-1 with Crewe at Portman Road.

Ipswich Town have suffered a double injury blow with the news that forward duo David McGoldrick and Tom Lawrence have had to withdraw from the Republic of Ireland and Wales squads respectively.

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