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With David McGoldrick and Tom Lawrence injured – who should play up front for Ipswich Town now?

PUBLISHED: 14:36 20 March 2017 | UPDATED: 15:13 20 March 2017

David McGoldrick winces after being fouled earlier this season. Picture: Steve Waller

David McGoldrick winces after being fouled earlier this season. Picture: Steve Waller

© Copyright Stephen Waller

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.

Tom Lawrence has been struggling with an ankle injury in recent weeks. Picture: Steve WallerTom Lawrence has been struggling with an ankle injury in recent weeks. Picture: Steve Waller

McGoldrick – who has won five full caps for the Republic of Ireland so far – was named in Martin O’Neill’s provisional 39-man squad, but the FAI have confirmed that he is not in the final party of 28 for their World Cup qualifier with Wales and their friendly against Iceland.

The 29-year-old was subbed 12 minutes from the end of Saturday’s 3-1 defeat at Cardiff City. It’s understood his knee injury makes him touch-and-go to play against Birmingham City, at Portman Road, a week on Saturday.

Lawrence – Town’s 11-goal top-scorer – has been withdrawn from Wales’ squad today. The Leicester City loanee underwent a scan after playing the full match in South Wales on Saturday. It’s understood a hip problem has been diagnosed and, potentially, he could be sidelined for a number of weeks.

Should the duo both still be out, manager Mick McCarthy would be left with Brett Pitman, Freddie Sears and Kieffer Moore as his striker options for the crunch home clashes with Birmingham and Wigan.

Reading loanee Dominic Samuel continues to recover from a broken toe, Leon Best has been told by manager Mick McCarthy he will never play for the club again, while England Under-18 international Ben Morris is on loan at National League side Woking (with a 24-hour recall).

It’s another yet set-back for the luckless McGoldrick who was beginning to rediscover his form of old following a stop-start two years of injury frustration.

Speaking last month, he said: “I don’t think I’ve been fully fit since 14 years of age! I do feel good at the minute though, this is the best I’ve felt in a long time.”

Cardiff City loanee Emyr Huws has been left out of the Wales squad with a tight hamstring.

Christophe Berra is with Scotland, Kevin Bru with Mauritius, Tommy Smith with New Zealand, while Andre Dozzell and Tristan Nydam are with the England Under-18s.

Meanwhile, Town’s U23s are in action against Crewe Alexandra at Portman Road this evening (7pm ko).

Blues boss Mick McCarthy has confirmed that defender Steven Taylor will play following a hamstring injury, while Jonny Williams may also be involved having returned to training following a hamstring problem of his own.

With Ipswich Town’s Championship season just over a week away from kicking-off, excitement is building at Portman Road – the buzz at Thursday’s open day spreading a new wave of optimism amongst supporters.

Ipswich Town take on Charlton Athletic, at The Valley, in their final warm-up game for 2017/18 tomorrow afternoon. Stuart Watson previews the game.

Three of Ipswich Town’s summer signings are struggling to be fit for next Saturday’s Championship opener against Birmingham City, at Portman Road.

Ipswich Town new boy Dominic Iorfa believes his strongest position, in the long-term, will be centre-back.

Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy says he will be restricted to signing a striker on loan due to the fact the Blues can’t compete financially with some of the ‘bonkers’ transfer fees being spent in the Championship.

Blues fans of all ages have gathered at Portman Road today to meet their heroes ahead of the start of the new season.

Huge queues are building up outside Portman Road this morning for today’s annual Ipswich Town Open Day.

The second tier season starts next Friday, however, clubs are working frantically to add to their squads, ahead of a long campaign. Several deals HAVE already been done though and CHRIS BRAMMER picks out six of the best.

Nearly 60 per cent of Ipswich Town fans would like to see Luke Chambers start in the heart of the Blues defence, alongside Adam Webster, when the Championship season begins next Saturday.

Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy says he is prepared to play a waiting game to sign the right striker before the transfer window shuts.

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