Blues are lining-up Celtic defender

IPSWICH Town are lining up a January move for Celtic defender Darren O'Dea.

Derek Davis

IPSWICH Town are lining up a January move for Celtic defender Darren O'Dea.

The Blues are hoping to land the 21-year-old, left-sided centre back, on loan when the transfer window re-opens in the new year.

As O'Dea plays across the border for the SPL giants he can't switch to Portman Road as loan deals can only be agreed between clubs in the English league until December 31.

It is possible Town will try to land the Republic of Ireland Under-21s captain on a more permanent deal for the player valued at around £300,000 and has another two-and-a-half years left on the contact he signed at Parkhead last March, but at the moment a loan deal has been discussed.

O'Dea was a team-mate of Owen Garvan and Shane Supple at Home Farm in Dublin and plays alongside the Ipswich midfielder for their country.

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Both have had call-ups to Giovanni Trapattoni's full squad without winning a cap so far.

The 6ft 1in defender was chased by Aston Villa, Liverpool and Manchester City, while at Home Farm, but chose the Bhoys and made his debut in the CIS Cup in September 2006.

He has played Champions' League football and made enough appearances during the 2006/07 season to win a SPL winner's medal.

O'Dea has netted three goals in his 31 Celtic appearances, but has found himself out of Gordon Strachan's side this season and has been looking for a move away.

He has played just once, a nine-minute substitute appearance when Celtic beat Hamilton earlier this month, since being arrested and handed a £40 fine for breach of the peace following an incident outside a Glasgow night club in August. The incident also involved team-mates Aiden McGeady and Scott Brown.

O'Dea is from good sporting stock with mum Anne representing Ireland at basketball.

Town's hopes of eventually landing Darren Ambrose took an upturn when the Arab consortium looking to buy Charlton Athletic pulled out of the deal. Ambrose's contract at the Valley ends next summer.

Reports linking Town with 19-year-old Chelsea midfielder Lee Sawyer appeared wide of the mark.

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