Town bid to land former £5m striker

IPSWICH want former £5 million man Jon Macken to boost their bid to climb off the bottom of the Championship.And he could replace Sam Parkin in Saturday's squad to face Hull as Luton and Preston wage a bidding war for the ex-Swindon striker.

By Mel Henderson

IPSWICH want former £5 million man Jon Macken to boost their bid to climb off the bottom of the Championship.

And he could replace Sam Parkin in Saturday's squad to face Hull as Luton and Preston wage a bidding war for the ex-Swindon striker.

The 28-year-old Crystal Palace striker has been targeted by Town boss Jim Magilton, who said today: “Macken is definitely a player who interests us.


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“I will be speaking to Palace manager Peter Taylor to see if we can get something done. I'd like to sign him on loan for a month and take it from there.”

It could be a hectic few days on the transfer front at Portman Road as Magilton also pursues a defender, ideally in time for Saturday's basement battle.

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Ipswich have been offered £300,000 by Luton for Parkin, while Preston have bid less, and Magilton added: “Sam's future could be sorted out this week.

“It will ultimately come down to the player and what he wants to do. Depending on who bids what he might have a choice of clubs.

“There are also defenders who interest us and something might happen on that front. We are in a position to sign players on loan or on a permanent basis.

“We have money to spend and we want to spend it wisely. It would be lovely if we could bring in a new defender for the weekend and we are scouring the country for the right man.”

Ipswich are clearly ready to cut their losses on Parkin, who cost them £500,000 last summer and would probably welcome a change of scenery after failing to settle in the area.

Meanwhile, Magilton's interest in former England Under-18 cap Macken follows on from his successful move to bring in West Ham youngster Mark Noble on loan.

The 19-year-old midfielder, who was in the crowd for last night's England Under-21 international against Moldova at Portman Road, is a likely starter against Hull.

Magilton would like nothing more than to also give a debut to former Manchester United trainee Macken, who made a name for himself after switching to Preston.

He netted 74 goals in four and a half years at Deepdale, which prompted Kevin Keegan to fork out a club record fee of £5 million in February 2002 to sign him on behalf of Manchester City.

But the goals were harder to come by at City - just 12 in 59 appearances - and Palace, managed at the time by Iain Dowie, paid £750,000 to take him to Selhurst Park in June last year.

Macken, who was sent off at Portman Road last season, has bagged just two goals in his 29 appearances and new boss Taylor has kept him mainly in reserve during the Eagles' flying start to the current campaign.

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