Gavin vows to keep Town safe

GAVIN Williams, Ipswich Town's talisman, today vowed to lift the Blues up the Championship table in the final eight games of the season.The 26-year-old Welsh international midfielder returned to the first team as a substitute in Tuesday's 1-0 defeat at Preston.

By Elvin King

GAVIN Williams, Ipswich Town's talisman, today vowed to lift the Blues up the Championship table in the final eight games of the season.

The 26-year-old Welsh international midfielder returned to the first team as a substitute in Tuesday's 1-0 defeat at Preston.

He had been missing for the previous eight games with a pelvic problem - when Town won just twice and were goalless on six occasions.

“I came through 60 minutes at Deepdale pain-free,” said Williams. “I might need two or three games to regain match fitness.

“But I am feeling good again and am sure we can have a strong finish and move up the table.”

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Barnsley's win at Plymouth last night added to the few nerves Ipswich fans have about being overtaken by the teams below them.

A defeat at struggling Luton at Kenilworth Road on Saturday would add more concern, but Williams said: “We must keep working hard and doing the right things and results will come.

“We dominated the Preston game and matched one of the best sides in the division.”

Williams, who was involved in every game when Ipswich lost just three times in 13 games either side of Christmas, is one booking away from joining Dan Harding in sitting out a two-match ban.

Now on nine yellow cards for the season, Williams will be suspended if booked once more before the end of the month - games versus Luton on Saturday and Plymouth on March 31.

Striker Alan Lee will be available on Saturday after serving a one-match ban at Preston, although Town first team coach Bryan Klug has reinforced manager Jim Magilton's declaration that the club is searching to bring in a similar impact-making loan signing to Francis Jeffers.

Darren Currie has a chance to fulfil his dream of playing Premiership football after signing on loan for Derby County until the end of the season.

The 32-year-old winger, who trained with his new team mates today, likens his move to Pride Park to the day he moved from Brighton to Ipswich in December 2004.

“This could well be my last opportunity and I am going to give my absolute all to help Derby get to the Premiership,” said Currie.

“It is a great opportunity and it was a very easy decision to make.

“Billy Davies believes in me and that has given me great confidence. It is wonderful to go somewhere where you are wanted.”

There has been talk of a Currie move from Portman Road since the start of the season and he spent time on loan at Coventry and on trial with LA Galaxy.

Billy Davies, the Derby manager, said: “Darren is a very talented individual and I think he can open a door or two for us.

“It is now up to Darren. Who knows where we will be at the end of the season. We'll look at it later on.”

Town keeper Lewis Price has been excluded from the Welsh squad for the games against Republic of Ireland and San Marino in the Euro 2008 qualifiers next week.

Striker Billy Clarke has been named in the Republic's Under-21 squad for a friendly with Holland on March 27. Shane Supple and Owen Garvan are not included.

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