Naylor poised for return to first team
RICHARD Naylor is poised for a shock return to first team action with Ipswich Town.With Alex Bruce rated extremely doubtful for the trip to Coventry City tomorrow due to a groin injury, Sito Castro definitely out after suffering concussion against Burnley and Dan Harding struggling with a thigh problem, Naylor may be pressed into service earlier than originally expected.
By Derek Davis
RICHARD Naylor is poised for a shock return to first team action with Ipswich Town.
With Alex Bruce rated extremely doubtful for the trip to Coventry City tomorrow due to a groin injury, Sito Castro definitely out after suffering concussion against Burnley and Dan Harding struggling with a thigh problem, Naylor may be pressed into service earlier than originally expected.
The 30-year-old Blues defender has been out since the summer with a toe problem and more recently a neck injury kept him from playing.
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Naylor returned to training last week and it was hoped he would pick up some match fitness in a game behind closed doors or a reserve match before a first team recall.
But with the transfer window not opening until next week manager Jim Magilton must use the resources available and Naylor will be in the 16 to play the Sky Blues in tomorrow's televised match.
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Although Fabian Wilnis will start instead of Bruce if Harding is fit, the Dutchman could go to full-back if needed and it is possible that Naylor will see action alongside skipper Jason de Vos.
Defence is an area Magilton has said he wants to strengthen and he is expected to bring in a new central defender next month.
Ipswich are keeping close tabs on Drogheda United centre half Graham Gartland, with the Irish side understood to be asking around £400,000 for the multiple cup winner
Hibernian's Rob Jones is another big defender who has attracted Magilton's interest but the SPL club are reluctant sellers.
Town go to Coventry searching for just their third away win of 2007 but they did beat City at the Ricoh Stadium on Boxing Day last year.
The Sky Blues are in disarray having lost five home games already this season and they will be without Leon Best and Kevin Kyle, who are both suspended.
Former Blues keeper Andy Marshall is expected to get a recall after being out of favour for the past nine matches.