Jason in race against time

IPSWICH defender Jason De Vos is refusing to concede defeat in his battle to face Burnley at the weekend.But the Canadian international, who limped off in Tuesday's convincing 5-1 home win over Sheffield United, faces a race against time as he seeks to extend his ever-present league record this season.

IPSWICH defender Jason De Vos is refusing to concede defeat in his battle to face Burnley at the weekend.

But the Canadian international, who limped off in Tuesday's convincing 5-1 home win over Sheffield United, faces a race against time as he seeks to extend his ever-present league record this season.

De Vos had not missed a single minute of Coca-Cola Championship action until he was forced off with a dead leg.

But unless he makes a miracle-like recovery over the next two days, he is likely to sit out Saturday's clash at Turf Moor, when Town will be looking to stretch their unbeaten league run to nine games.


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Manager Joe Royle said today: “I would love to say that Jason has a 50-50 chance of playing against Burnley, but realistically his chances are not that good.

“I think it will be very hard for him to make it, although he will continue to have treatment and we'll just have to wait and see how he is later today and tomorrow.”

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De Vos has a three-inch blood clot in his thigh that physio David Williams is working hard to disperse, but the Burnley clash is likely to come too soon.

However, Royle added: “These things generally take four or five days, so I am pretty sure Jason will be fine for the following weekend and the visit of Leeds to Portman Road.”

Meanwhile, the return to action last night of goalkeeper Kelvin Davis has given Royle plenty to ponder.

Davis played in Town's first reserve triumph of the season when first-half goals by Pablo Counago and Dean Bowditch earned a 2-0 win over West Ham in a game staged at the ground of Conference club Dagenham & Redbridge.

Sidelined with a back problem that has seen him sit out six first team games, the ex-Luton and Wimbledon number one declared himself “ready, willing and able” to face Burnley.

Now Royle must decide whether to recall Davis or stick with stand-in Lewis Price.

The Welsh Under-21 cap has yet to experience a league defeat, although he said recently that he expected to be back on the bench once Davis was fully fit again.

Royle said: “I have said before that I rate Kelvin as the best goalkeeper in this division, but there is no doubt that Lewis has done very, very well for us.

“There will be a lot of thought going into my selection, but I am not going to make big decisions like that on a Thursday.”

Royle was reluctant to comment on speculation suggesting that Aston Villa and Everton have joined Charlton as potential bidders for in-form Town striker Darren Bent once the January sales get under way.

But in typically forthright manner he said: “I read in a newspaper that Villa have made a bid for Darren, but it's poppycock.

“We have received no bids for him from any clubs since Charlton's offer was turned down in August and we're not looking for any either.

“All we want to concentrate on is winning games and getting into the New Year either still second or on top of the league. As I said the other day, we're after Wigan.”

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