Royle offers second chance to Sereni
IPSWICH boss Joe Royle today refused to rule out a Portman Road return for goalkeeper Matteo Sereni.Despite Sereni's insistence that he will not be coming back, Royle stressed: "He has a contract here and we are not going to be tearing it up.
By Mel Henderson
IPSWICH boss Joe Royle today refused to rule out a Portman Road return for goalkeeper Matteo Sereni.
Despite Sereni's insistence that he will not be coming back, Royle stressed: "He has a contract here and we are not going to be tearing it up."
Sereni's season-long loan spell with Serie A outfit Brescia ended at the weekend with a 2-2 home draw with Modena.
And, as the Star reported on Saturday, both Brescia and his former club Sampdoria, who sold him to Ipswich in a record £5million deal less than two years ago, are keen to sign him.
But Royle claimed: "We are looking for a new goalkeeper and if Matteo doesn't get himself fixed up in Italy I expect to see him back here.
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"We have sent both him and Ulrich Le Pen letters informing them that pre-season training commences on July 2.
"If no deals have gone through before that date that suit both sides – and I mean both sides – I will welcome them both back.
"And if we're paying them, we will play them, provided I am satisfied that they warrant a place in my team."
However, Royle accepts the odds are against either player turning out for Ipswich again.
He added: "It is no secret that we would like to remove them from the wage bill, for obvious reasons. If they return it might not be the ideal situation, which is no slight on their ability.
"I also know that agents will be looking to compromise our position and obtain free transfers for their players, but we will only do what is right for this club.
"It's all very well saying we can't afford Matteo Sereni, but we paid a lot of money for him and will be looking for something back.
"He has had a great year in Italy and I am sure he loves it there, but his contract is with Ipswich, whether he likes it or not."
Royle is adamant that if his search for a new goalkeeper proves fruitless in the next few weeks, and no transfer has been arranged for Sereni, he will give him a fair crack of the whip at Portman Road.
But Sereni is equally determined that he will remain in Italy, which means a busy few weeks of talks that will determine his future.