Burnley want Santos

IPSWICH Town manager Joe Royle today revealed that utility player Georges Santos could be joining Coca-Cola Championship rivals Burnley.The Blues have agreed to allow Santos - 34 next month - to move to Turf Moor on a free transfer.

By Elvin King

IPSWICH Town manager Joe Royle today revealed that utility player Georges Santos could be joining Coca-Cola Championship rivals Burnley.

The Blues have agreed to allow Santos - 34 next month - to move to Turf Moor on a free transfer.

Royle said: “We have agreed a deal with Burnley and no fee is involved. It is now up to the player and his agent to work out the final details.

“There is no rush to get rid of Georges but we have to consider our wage bill and the fact that if we bring somebody in fresh then we will have to lose one of our current players.”

Santos' agent is former Ipswich captain Mick Mills and he will be talking to Burnley and his player to try to agree a deal.

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Santos joined Ipswich 12 months ago from Grimsby and played as a central defensive partner to Richard Naylor when the club zoomed up the table in the autumn after a dreadful start to the campaign.

He was unable to command a regular place after that although the Frenchman started in Tuesday's friendly game against Randers in Denmark and trained today with the rest of the squad after recovering from a hip problem.

Royle added: “Striker Shefki Kuqi turned down interest from a club in Korea today and we understand his feelings that he wants to fight for his place at Portman Road.

“It is now up to Georges and his agent and we await further developments.”

Matt Richards returned to training today after a knee injury and will take his place in tonight's team that plays AAB Aalborg in a game against a Danish team that qualified for the UEFA Cup last season.

Ipswich's longest serving player, Richard Naylor, has for the first time in his Town career been handed a squad number lower than 12.

Naylor, who plays up front alongside Darren Bent tonight, will wear the six shirt after the club today announced its official squad numbers for the 2004-05 campaign.

The numbers are: 1 Kelvin Davis, 2 Fabian Wilnis, 3 Matt Richards, 4 Jason DeVos, 5 Drissa Diallo, 6 Richard Naylor, 7 Jim Magilton, 8 Tommy Miller, 9 Pablo Counago, 11 Kevin Horlock, 15 Georges Santos, 17 Dean Bowditch, 18 Darren Bent, 19 Antonio Murray, 20 Aidan Collins, 21 Scott Mitchell, 26 Scott Barron, 27 Aden Atay, 28 Gerrard Nash, 29 Ben Patten, 30 Jerome Sobers, 31 Shane Supple, 32 Shefki Kuqi, 33 Ian Westlake, 34 Lewis Price.

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