Makin stuns Blues with U-turn

CHRIS Makin has stunned Ipswich by rejecting their new contract offer.It represents an amazing about-turn by the experienced defender after he indicated he would be staying put at Portman Road.

CHRIS Makin has stunned Ipswich by rejecting their new contract offer.

It represents an amazing about-turn by the experienced defender after he indicated he would be staying put at Portman Road.

Makin, 31, missed most of last season after being injured in the home defeat by West Ham and failed to recover in time to make a return to senior action.

He was forced to undergo two operations and even feared his career could be over as his thigh problem initially confounded the medical experts.

But he was more upbeat recently after working hard to be fully fit for the start of the new campaign.

Ipswich boss Joe Royle said: “I am somewhat surprised and I am hoping to speak to Chris on Monday and find out why he has turned us down.

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“Is it money or has he had a better offer from another club? I need to know before I start making my own plans to bring the squad up to strength.

“We supported Chris all last season when he was injured and now, from my point of view, I need to know whether he wants to stay or not.”

Makin has rejected Town's offer of a two-month deal which, provided his fitness was fine, was to have been followed by a further contract to June 30 next year.

That would have brought him into line with three other players - Fabian Wilnis, Richard Naylor and Jim Magilton - who have also been offered new one-year deals they have agreed to sign next week.

Royle will be hoping he can persuade Makin to change his mind and extend his stay at a club he joined in March 2001 from Sunderland at a cost of

£1.4million.

The pair were together at Oldham where Makin launched his career. He then spent the 1996-97 season in France with Marseille before returning to England to join the Black Cats.

Last week, Ipswich Town's official website carried a story in which Makin was quoted as saying: “I can't wait to get going again, especially getting back to kicking a ball and playing in the pre-season friendlies.

“My recovery is all going according to plan and there have been no reactions so far to the surgery, touch wood.”

Makin also spoke of his confidence in being fit to join the club's pre-season trip to Denmark, where they will play two games, but now it appears he sees his future elsewhere.

n Midfielder Jermaine Wright, who has officially rejected a new two-year deal and whose agent claims he will be joining a Premiership club, remains a target for newly-relegated Leeds United.

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