Pablo vows to keep physical style

IPSWICH Town hit man Pablo Counago vowed today: "I won't drop the physical side of my game."The 13-goal Spaniard thought he would miss tomorrow's Nationwide League Division One mid-table showdown at Burnley due to a one-game suspension for five bookings.

By Dave Allard

IPSWICH Town hit man Pablo Counago vowed today: "I won't drop the physical side of my game."

The 13-goal Spaniard thought he would miss tomorrow's Nationwide League Division One mid-table showdown at Burnley due to a one-game suspension for five bookings.

But it transpired that only four had been registered at the FA and Counago is free to continue his quest for a first away Blues goal.

Another caution at Turf Moor would bring a ban, but the 23-year-old former Celta Vigo man declared: "I'll stay the same. The physical side of my game is important – I wouldn't be the same without it. Bookings don't worry me, these things happen.

"For a long time I thought and everyone thought, that I would not be playing at Burnley. It was great to hear that I was and hopefully I can make the most of it."

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It is amazing that all of the promotion-chasing Blues' top marksman's goals have come at home.

Counago, signed from his Spanish homeland the summer before last on a Bosman free transfer, did not score at all last season in 19 appearances that were mainly as a substitute in the Premiership.

"It's wonderful to be top scorer this season so far and I want more and more. I know it's strange that all 13 goals have come at home," said crowd favourite Counago.

"I work just as hard away from home and should have had some. There have been chances."

A seven-game unbeaten Town run of six straight league and one FA Cup success has lifted everyone at Portman Road.

"Confidence is a big, big thing," said Counago. "I've got plenty at the moment and so have the team. We've moved into mid-table and in two games' time I'm hoping that we can be close to a move into the top six."

Town boss Joe Royle said: "Pablo sometimes gets into a bit of trouble when he loses the ball and goes chasing it. He's doing fine and I'm well pleased with what he's contributing for the all-round team effort."

Town sold left-sided midfielder or defender Jamie Clapham to Birmingham this week in a £1.3 million deal.

Royle has various options to cover in for him and it is likely that Darren Ambrose, who returned to a re-shuffled side for the home FA Cup win over Morecambe last Saturday, will start again tomorrow.

Central defender Chris Makin again misses out due to suspension, but fellow centre-half Thomas Gaardsoe is back in the squad after a groin injury.

Midfielder Tommy Miller is back after a knee problem and fellow middle man Jim Magilton returns to the fold after missing the Morecambe game due to compassionate leave.

Not included in the Town squad are striker Alun Armstrong and midfielders Finidi George and Martijn Reuser. Both are staying behind for further intensive training with fitness coach Simon Thadani.

Also in the Thadani squad is centre-half Mark Venus.

All four are likely to be in action for the reserves against Chelsea on Monday at the Aldershot Town ground.

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