Devann sets sights on first team

THERE were times when he thought it wouldn't happen, but new Ipswich Town signing Devann Yao is now planning to make the most of the 'fantastic opportunity' in front of him.

THERE were times when he thought it wouldn't happen, but new Ipswich Town signing Devann Yao is now planning to make the most of the 'fantastic opportunity' in front of him.

The 19-year-old American signed a contract yesterday that will take him to the end of the season.

He was free to sign outside of the transfer window because he was classed as a free agent.

After impressing while on trial the speedy wide player was offered a contract by Blues manager Roy Keane in November.


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But having spent time in youth development at a number of clubs including in France and

Italy, it became a complicated process before Town could seal the deal.

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Yao, who has his mother as his agent, has now recovered from a badly cut shin that hampered him for a few weeks and is set to play in a reserve game away to Norwich next Wednesday.

He admitted that he wondered on occasions whether the red tape would ever be overcome.

“There were times when I was worried it might not happen,” said Yao. “But the clubs I have been at have not stood in my way and the people at Ipswich have worked hard to make it happen.

“Now I can't wait to get going.”

The New York-born player scored in a friendly against Celtic in a 2-2 draw at Portman Road in November and has recently returned to training.

“I've enjoyed my time at Ipswich and I'm happy that I now have the chance to play for the club,” Yao added.

“I'm here until the summer and hopefully in that time I can break into the first-team.

“If I can play one or two games it would mean I'm making progress.

“The coaching staff have been pushing me and telling me what they want.

“They have been really positive to me.

“Now the challenge is to keep improving and try and win myself a new contract in the summer.

“I've been to France and Italy to play, but English football is the style I enjoy the most.

“I love the pace of the game here and this is a fantastic opportunity for me.”

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