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Ipswich Town striker James Norwood available for selection at Wigan Athletic



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Ipswich Town's interim manager John McGreal has revealed James Norwood is available for selection this weekend at Wigan Athletic.

There has been a lot of mystery so far this season surrounding the striker, who has made just five appearances – the last of which came in early October.

It is believed that he has been placed on the transfer list at Portman Road and has been turning out for the club's under-23s of late, sparking suggestions of a fall out with Paul Cook.

James Norwood has not featured for Ipswich since early October. Picture: Barry Goodwin
James Norwood has not featured for Ipswich since early October. Picture: Barry Goodwin

However, following Cook's sacking at the weekend, the former Tranmere Rovers frontman stated that there had been 'no issues' between the pair.

He wrote on Twitter: "Gutted to see the gaffer go. We have a great relationship on and off the field. He was up against it for a multitude of reasons this season and I genuinely wish him the best in the future.

"For anyone thinking this isn’t genuine, you’re wrong. Me and the gaffer spoke every day and we had no issues whatsoever and never had a fallout. He's a top man and we got on very well and had a laugh. Like I said, his hands were tied."

The club's CEO Mark Ashton responded to the 'hands were tied' comment by insisting that team selection is 100 per cent down to whoever is in charge of first-team affairs. And ahead of Saturday's trip to the north west, McGreal echoed those sentiments.

"Yeah of course I can (play Norwood)," said the temporary boss. "He's come back in, he's trained with the guys this morning and has been excellent. He needed minutes with the under-23s.

"He's a personality around the club and he's there if we need him to be called upon.

"I know a lot about Norsy. When I was at Colchester he scored a couple of goals against me. I know a lot of strengths and a lot of his personality as well.

"Not that I've got a relationship with Norsy, but I know of him. He's a professional lad and he tries hard on the pitch – that's all I know of. I don't know him off the pitch as such, so I can only judge him on the pitch and on the training pitch."

However, while Norwood could come back into the fold for the Wigan clash, Wes Burns and Hayden Coulson will miss out through injury.

McGreal added: "(Burns and Coulson) are a little while off at the moment. They're still with the physios and we haven't had any dates with that. Wes might be coming towards getting on the grass at the moment, but still a way away from the first team.