Reuser cup boost for Blues
MARTIJN Reuser is fit to return for Ipswich in tomorrow's Worthington Cup third round tie at Crewe.The Dutch midfielder did not start any of Town's last four games but boss George Burley said today: "Martijn trained at the weekend and is okay."
By Mel Henderson
MARTIJN Reuser is fit to return for Ipswich in tomorrow's Worthington Cup third round tie at Crewe.
The Dutch midfielder did not start any of Town's last four games but boss George Burley said today: "Martijn trained at the weekend and is okay."
But while Reuser has recovered from a thigh injury, young defender Titus Bramble remains a doubt as he struggles to shake off a persistent Achilles problem.
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Burley, back from a foreign scouting mission, added: "As far as I'm aware all four players who played international football at the weekend are okay, but I will be in a better position to assess things after we train today."
Jim Magilton (Northern Ireland), Matt Holland (Republic of Ireland), Hermann Hreidarsson (Iceland) and Finidi George (Nigeria) all reported back today.
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"I will have more of an idea what my team will be at Crewe once I have seen everyone," said Burley, who will take his squad north this afternoon ahead of tomorrow's game.
He has hinted at changes, to allow fringe players a taste of first team action, but the main objective is to advance to the fourth round of a competition where Town's interest was only ended at the semi-final stage by Birmingham last season.
Burley warned: "Crewe are a good First Division side and we know they like to play football. We are going away from home, in a one-off cup game, and it is never easy in these circumstances."
Meanwhile, Burley confirmed Ipswich would not stand in Amir Karic's way if they received an acceptable offer for their Slovenian international left-back.
Karic, 27, has been unable to establish himself at Portman Road since his £800,000 move from Maribor 15 months ago and has claimed an Italian Serie A club are keen to take him on loan. Burley said: "We have had no contact with any club about Amir, but would let him go on loan and wouldn't stand in his way if he had the chance to move on a permanent basis.
"Amir hasn't been able to push into the first team squad and at the end of the day it's all about performances and being able to cope at this level.
"While it's never easy coming from abroad and adjusting to the English game, Amir hasn't been able to do it.
"He has a chance of going to the World Cup next summer, with Slovenia in the play-offs, and he really needs first team football.
"He's been on loan before, but he struggled at Crystal Palace and while he's got quality he hasn't been able to show it in his time with us."
Town are also likely to agree to a request by Wimbledon to extend 24-year-old defender Wayne Brown's loan spell.
Brown's month-long temporary stint with the Dons will end after this weekend's derby clash with Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.
He has helped to boost Wimbledon's play-off prospects in an unbeaten, five-game run from which they have taken 11 points and kept three clean sheets.
Not for the first time, Burley has ruled himself out of the running to take charge of Scotland, the job becoming vacant at the weekend when Craig Brown stepped down after eight years in charge.