McCall tell Town fans: Don't panic yet

IPSWICH Town chief scout Steve McCall today reassured fans concerned about the current strength of the Blues squad.McCall, who has taken over from Colin Suggett as the man responsible for bringing new talent to Portman Road, expects two signings to be made before Friday's home friendly with Italian giants Lazio.

By Elvin King

IPSWICH Town chief scout Steve McCall today reassured fans concerned about the current strength of the Blues squad.

McCall, who has taken over from Colin Suggett as the man responsible for bringing new talent to Portman Road, expects two signings to be made before Friday's home friendly with Italian giants Lazio.

“We are frustrated that it is taking longer than we hoped,” said McCall. “But we have two players targeted - and they will make a big difference.

“We can't name names because we do not want to alert other clubs and hopefully it will be kept quiet until we can announce the signings.

“If we do not complete the signings by Friday then we are confident that we will have fresh faces in time for the first Championship game at home to Crystal Palace on Saturday week.”

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Ipswich played four triallists on last week's tour to Holland and Belgium, but none were better than the players already in manager Jim Magilton's squad.

“As the manager has said, we want a couple of players who will make an impact and strengthen the squad considerably,” added McCall, who was coach under Joe Royle last season.

“We are having to be patient, and I ask our supporters to be patient as well. We want to make sure we bring in the calibre of person we need. We will not be rushed.”

Although Ipswich are unbeaten under Magilton their performances have generally been below-par with four 1-1 draws and a 2-0 win over Galway.

And after a disappointing mid-table campaign last season, fans of the Blues are looking for an upturn in fortunes this term.

The players McCall can bring in will have a huge affect on these dreams.

Everton's Lee Carsley has been mentioned as a possible season-long loan signing, while former Town players Tommy Miller and Jamie Clapham have been tipped in some quarters for a return.

Gavin Williams, Owen Garvan and Alan Lee were back in training yesterday when Ipswich staged a practice match at Portman Road to get used to the new surface that has been laid in the last couple of weeks.

This session went well and all three could be back in contention for the Lazio game after missing out on last week's six-day European tour.

Players were involved in the Richard Naylor Testimonial golf day at Stoke-By-Nayland today, with a match taking place at Grays tonight when mainly fringe players will be involved.

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IPSWICH Town are sending a side of mainly reserve and youth team players to Cambridge United for a fixture against the Conference side on Saturday afternoon (kick-off 3pm).

Players who were substitutes the previous night against Lazio at Portman Road may also be included.

IPSWICH Town could be playing against former player James Scowcroft on the opening day of new season.

Scowcroft is expected to sign for Crystal Palace after completing a medical - with the Londoners reported to be paying £500,000.

Coventry manager Micky Adams said: “James has been offered more money and feels it is something he wants to pursue.

“He has two years left on a deal here but I think £500,000, when I bought him in for nothing, is a fantastic deal.

“But I am disappointed. I have had James at two clubs now and he has done a fantastic job.”

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