Ipswich stepping up transfer business as two keepers remain in play, Ward talks continue and striker linked

PUBLISHED: 06:00 14 August 2020 | UPDATED: 11:21 14 August 2020

David Cornell and Stephen Ward have both been talking to Ipswich Town. Picture: PA

David Cornell and Stephen Ward have both been talking to Ipswich Town. Picture: PA

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Ipswich Town are getting closer to making their first signing of the summer, with both David Cornell and Stephen Ward in talks regarding deals.

Ipswich Town are stepping up their transfer business and are getting closer to making their first signings of the summer.

The Blues had talks with both goalkeeper David Cornell and left-back Stephen Ward at Playford Road yesterday, as they look to conclude deals, but there are further names in the frame.

Town have been in the market for another senior goalkeeper to challenge Tomas Holy for a starting spot, with Cornell a player Town coach Jimmy Walker watched on several occasions during the second half of last season.

Remi Matthews was another leading target, with the former Bolton man training with the Blues during the early weeks of pre-season, but though he’s no longer at the club on a daily basis the Blues remain in contact with him.

David Cornell makes a save for Northampton. Picture: PADavid Cornell makes a save for Northampton. Picture: PA

Sunderland are keen on the former Norwich academy keeper, with Ipswich understood to be continuing their pursuit as well as talking to Cornell.

Welshman Cornell has been looking for a new club since opting to leave Northampton at the end of his contract earlier this summer, having played a key role in the Cobblers’ promotion to League One.

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The former Northampton man has also been eyed by a string of Championship clubs including Derby and Birmingham, as well as Town’s rivals, Sunderland.

Left-back Ward, 34, has been training with Ipswich since the start of the week and is himself a free agent following his departure from Stoke.

The 50-cap Republic of Ireland international is understood to have impressed Paul Lambert and his coaching staff this week, with a contract offered which is now being considered.

The Blues have been in looking at signing a new left-sided player for much of the summer, with former loanee Luke Garbutt a prime target.

However, negotiations have become more difficult for any League One side looking to sign him following the introduction of the new £2.5m salary cap.

Ipswich remain in contact with Garbutt and have asked to be informed of any developments regarding his future but, as things stand, he is unlikely to join. Sunderland are also interested and have made the former Everton man an offer, with the salary cap again likely to restrict their movement.

A striker has been a position of interest for much of the summer, with physical frontman Oli Hawkins yesterday linked with the club by TWTD who report the two parties are in talks.

The 6ft 5inch forward is a free agent after leaving Portsmouth following a three-year spell which yielded 18 goals in 96 games.

Veteran forward Danny Graham remains of interest to the Blues, as well as Sunderland, though both clubs are having to weigh up recruitment priorities in relation to the League One salary cap.

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