What's behind Ipswich bid for Pompey star pair?
By Staff Reporter
Tuesday 17 Jan 2012 21:52:00
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Are Ipswich trying to get their own back for Pompey's pursuit of David Norris last year in bidding for Jason Pearce and Joel Ward? Or is it a serious attempt to take two players from a Championship rival who they believe will help shore up a leaky defence?

Either way, if Michael Appleton has anything to do with, and we would hope he does, the men from Portman Road will face a battle to prise the pair away from Pompey.

It's unlikely that either player would want to leave - both appear settled and have been getting plenty of first-team football, with Pearce virtually an automatic choice in the heart of defence, So it would appear a deal will be done for one or both only if owners CSI's administrators force it through before the club is sold.

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Ipswich have lodged a bid for Pearce and Ward, according to sources in East Anglia.

The East Anglian Daily Times reports: 'Following Paul Jewell’s new youth policy, the Blues hope to sign the defensive duo to bolster a beleaguered backline which has been leaking goals at an alarming rate.

'Pearce, 24, is a no-nonsense centre back with a big reputation who only signed for Pompey in the summer for £500,000 from Bournemouth. Ward, 22, is a versatile defender/midfielder who can play either right back, centre back or on either wing. Standing 5ft 9ins tall, he’s scored twice this season for Pompey.

'Insiders at the cash-strapped Championship club believe that it would take a big offer from the Blues to persuade Pompey to part with the pair.'

Ipswich were unhappy at the way Pompey chased Norris, then captain at Portman Road, before he moved to Fratton Park in the summer.

Appleton has gone on record as saying he is under no pressure to sell players despite the owners going into administration - although it has been claimed he is operating under a one-in one-out revolving door policy during the transfer window.

The uncertainty over Ward and Pearce comes as Andrew Andronikou says he hopes to complete the sale of the club within days, saying contracts are in place.

It is not known if the preferred bidder is Italian-American businessman Joseph Cala, over whom fans have many unanswered questions.

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