Danny: Ipswich can win promotion

DANNY Simpson, recruited from Manchester United to help lift Ipswich Town into the big time, today gave the thumbs up to the Blues' chances of promotion.

Elvin King

DANNY Simpson, recruited from Manchester United to help lift Ipswich Town into the big time, today gave the thumbs up to the Blues' chances of promotion.

The 21-year-full back is set to make his Portman Road debut for Town in tomorrow's Coca-Cola Championship game against mid table Queens Park Rangers (kick off 3pm).

And the lad who is on loan until the end of the season said today: “Sir Alex Ferguson recommended Ipswich to me and said before I left Old Trafford that he hoped I could help them to gain promotion.”

Simpson was an important part of the Sunderland run in last season when they won the Championship, and Simpson is hoping that a similar loan spell at Ipswich will have the same results.

He added: “I have one Championship medal and if at all possible I would like to help Ipswich reach the Premier League.

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“And I cannot see why not. There is not much difference between Ipswich and Sunderland, in fact very little indeed, and I can see Ipswich going the same way as Sunderland and moving up a division.

“I have settled in quickly and the skills shown on the training pitch are very high with some very good technical players.

“I think I still need to learn more about the game and Ipswich manager Jim Magilton will help me to become a better player.

“When I go back to Old Trafford I will hopefully be more accomplished, but at the moment Man United is behind me and I am going to concentrate one hundred and ten per cent on Ipswich Town.”

Simpson says he cannot wait to taste the atmosphere in tomorrow's game having been shown around Portman Road by Town defender Alex Bruce who is a friend of his from their Salford days.

Simpson added: “Alex showed me the dressing rooms and around the ground and explained that there is always a good atmosphere. I have not played at Portman Road before and cannot wait to get started as being able to kick a ball every Saturday afternoon at 3pm is what every footballer dreams of doing.”

Magilton confirmed that he has brought Simpson to play as a full back and it remains to be seen whether he makes a full debut tomorrow or starts on the bench.

The Town boss has options in attack and he will wait and see how Shefki Kuqi is today before deciding whether the Finland international has recovered sufficiently from a hamstring strain to be named in the squad.

Gary Roberts is an alternative to play up front beside Alan Lee although Danny Haynes would be the most likely candidate.

And Magilton also did not rule out 18-year-old Jordan Rhodes when he said: “Jordan deserves his chance as when he has come on as substitute he has shown great maturity - and we know he can score goals.

“But whether he is involved tomorrow we will see.”

Dean Bowditch, who scored a hat trick for the reserves on Tuesday, is suffering from a groin problem and is unlikely to be considered with Magilton confirming that he believes his failure to bring in any loan players before the deadline will not harm the chances of a play-off finish.

He said: “We made numerous phone calls, kept checking with clubs all the while, while we were looking for the quality that could have boosted our squad.

“It did not happen and I can understand the reluctance of Premier League managers to let players go, but I have enough talent in my squad for us to complete the job that we have set ourselves.

“The players have answered all the calls I have made to them so far and I am sure they will carry this on for our final seven games starting with a very tricky match against an attack-minded and dangerous QPR side.”