Ian Marshall says Ipswich Town owner should financially back Mick McCarthy, if any club assets are sold in January

Adam Webster rises to win a header in the Newcastle penalty area during the first half

Adam Webster rises to win a header in the Newcastle penalty area during the first half

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Former Ipswich Town favourite Ian Marshall insists fans should be realistic over Adam Webster's future, but admitted he would only back a big-money sale, provided Blues boss Mick McCarthy was then given substantial funds to strengthen his struggling side.

Webster has been linked with a transfer window move to Premier League side Everton next month, following a solid start to his Ipswich career – the 21-year-old centre-back impressing since his £750,000-plus summer move from League Two side, Portsmouth.

A fee of £4m has been touted, with Sunderland also reported to be interested, but Town would be loathe to lose him, having seen talisman, Daryl Murphy join Newcastle in August, for a seven-figure fee.

That came after the big-money sales of left-backs Aaron Cresswell, in 2014, and Tyrone Mings a year later, who between them commanded more than £10m in transfer fees.

Despite that, McCarthy’s swoop for Webster represents the biggest transfer fee paid during his time at Town and the club recently reported an annual loss of more than £6m after a drop in profits from player sales compared with the previous year.

On selling players, Marshall said: “It’s the nature of the beast – someone comes in with a decent offer and the player is likely to go, I don’t mind that.

“My issue is that Mick McCarthy should at least be given some of the money for replacements and to strengthen his squad, that does not seem to be happening.

“I am not involved in finance or big business but you would like to think, if you’ve got a player who goes for ten million let’s say, your owner would turn round and say ‘Here’s £5m, go and strengthen the team’.”

Meanwhile, Marshall says Town’s players should be able to deal with the negativity from the stands, ahead of tonight’s home clash with fellow strugglers Bristol City.

“It’s very tough and while football’s a team sport, you have just got to try and get your own game in order,” revealed Marshall.

“I used to have a selfish attitude and would think to myself, ‘If I’m playing well, then the team has got a good chance of playing well’.”

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