Town's double injury blow

SKIPPER Jim Magilton and striker Nicky Forster have joined the growing Ipswich casualty list.The experienced pair will not join their colleagues in training until Thursday, when their chances of facing Sheffield Wednesday at Portman Road on Saturday will be assessed.

By Mel Henderson

SKIPPER Jim Magilton and striker Nicky Forster have joined the growing Ipswich casualty list.

The experienced pair will not join their colleagues in training until Thursday, when their chances of facing Sheffield Wednesday at Portman Road on Saturday will be assessed.

Midfielder Magilton, 36, has an inflamed toe, while 31-year-old Forster has a swollen knee and teenage winger Dean McDonald is also crocked, an ankle injury forcing his early withdrawal from last night's 2-1 home reserve win over Portsmouth.

It means that Town boss Joe Royle's already-modest resources are being tested, with Jason De Vos and Lewis Price also currently sidelined.

Royle said: “As far as Jim and Nicky are concerned, it is a precautionary measure to leave them out of training for a couple of days.

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“It would be counter-productive if they trained now, but when they join the others on Thursday we will know for sure about their chances for the weekend.

“We got Dean (McDonald) off last night as soon as he took a whack on the ankle after a late tackle, so hopefully he'll be OK.

“Dean has been a bit unfortunate not to have had a chance yet this season, either wide or up front, but we've got Dean Bowditch here and Jaime Peters has also come in.”

De Vos will again be absent on Saturday as he continues his recovery from the two broken ribs he sustained in the opening game of the season.

But there is a chance that goalkeeper Lewis Price, forced off at Leicester with a gashed knee, will have recovered in time.

Royle added: “Lewis is making progress and at the moment I would say he has a 50-50 chance of being fit to play against Wednesday.”

It was a major plus for the Town boss to see fit-again youngsters Aidan Collins, Scott Barron and Chris Casement all complete the full 90 minutes of last night's welcome win.

Dean Bowditch scored both goals to give himself a personal boost after last season proved to be so frustrating for a player who made his senior debut at the tender age of 16.

Royle said: “Dean earned and then converted a penalty and took his second very well. He was also among the goals in our pre-season games.

“He is listening to what we said about him having to score more regularly, but he has never been out of my plans.”

Meanwhile, former Ipswich loanee David Unsworth looks set to join Championship rivals Sheffield United after his Portsmouth contract, which still had a year to run, was settled.

It was against the Blades that the experienced ex-Everton defender made his Town debut in February, scoring the first goal in a 2-0 away win.

He made a total of 16 appearances and Royle wanted him back at Portman Road this season, either on a free transfer or again on loan.

Royle said: “It was always going to be difficult with David and his salary. In any case, he is keen to return north with his family.”

Ipswich are taking a close look at out-of-contract Cambridge United defender Adam Tann, who is training at Playford Road. Reading and Bristol City are also showing an interest in the 23-year-old, who can also play at full-back or in midfield.

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