Joe: Give me Juan more goal

IPSWICH are in danger of equalling a record this season that they definitely don't want.Crocked striker Sam Parkin and injury-plagued midfielder Jimmy Juan currently share the top scorer slot with five goals apiece.

By Mel Henderson

IPSWICH are in danger of equalling a record this season that they definitely don't want.

Crocked striker Sam Parkin and injury-plagued midfielder Jimmy Juan currently share the top scorer slot with five goals apiece.

And that is the lowest-ever tally for the club's leading marksman, set by Danish international defender or midfielder Claus Thomsen in the 1994-95 campaign when Town finished bottom of the Premiership.

Ironically, Thomsen was later bought for £900,000 by Everton, who were managed at the time by Joe Royle.

The Town boss said: “If we finish the season with our top scorer on five goals it will be the lowest of any player at any of my clubs in 24 years as a manager.

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“I have always had teams that score goals. I believe in progressive, positive football and all our training is geared towards going forward and trying to score goals.

“But we are talking about difficult, exceptional circumstances this season, with so many injuries to front men and players having to chip in from all areas of the team.”

The double blow of losing Parkin and Nicky Forster to injury for such a large part of the season has clearly taken its toll.

But they have not been the only casualties, with rising star Danny Haynes, new signing Alan Lee and 'trialist' Adam Proudlock also suffering.

Then on-loan star Ricardo Fuller, who netted twice in three games, had difficulties with red tape and a red card at Selhurst Park that curtailed his temporary stint from Southampton.

Royle added: “All things considered - and don't forget we have had injury problems in other areas of the team as well - it is remarkable how well we have done.

“We are not among the lowest scoring teams in the Championship but it is a lot different to last season when Shefki (Kuqi) and Darren (Bent) got 39 between them.

“The loss of one of our strikers, never mind both, would have been tough. Sam and Nicky came in last year to form a partnership and they haven't really had a chance to get together.”

With Parkin unlikely to feature again this season, Town will hope that on-loan Monaco star Juan can weigh in with at least one more goal in the remaining six games.

A more likely scenario, however, is that four-goal Lee will add to his tally and finish as the club's leading scorer.

Royle added: “Alan might have had two, three or maybe even more goals in his most recent games and he could double his current total before the end of the season.”

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