Rangers keeper Wes Foderingham has been earmarked as a possible summer signing by English Championship side Ipswich Town.
The 27-year-old, who has racked up more than a century of competitive appearances in a Gers shirt since moving to Ibrox in 2015, has been deemed surplus to requirements by new Rangers manager Steven Gerrard and it is reported that the Suffolk side has made preliminary contact with the former Swindon Town stopper.
Ipswich could be in the market for a new first-choice keeper with Polish international Bartosz Bialkowski yet to sign a new long-term contract that was offered to the 31-year-old back in January.
Ipswich boss Paul Hurst has only been in the Portman Road hot seat for a month and has so far demonstrated an excellent poker face with the local media in East Anglia regarding incomings and outgoings.
Maintaining the poker analogy, just as newbie card players adopt a tight opening strategy by keeping their cards close to their chest, Hurst — a newbie to Championship football — is adopting a similar approach.
Although the former Shrewsbury Town supremo has intimated the Tractor Boys are keen to keep Bialkowski at the club, reports in Suffolk suggest any new deal would need to make the Pole the club’s highest-paid player at £20,000 per week.
A Premier League Move Would Appeal to Bialkowski
Bialkowski was part of the Polish national squad that competed at this summer’s World Cup finals but did not get any game time because he was an understudy to Wojciech Szczesny and Lukasz Fabianski. The former Notts County and Southampton keeper might feel his best odds of pushing further into the Poland reckoning would be to seek a move to the Premier League, with Crystal Palace rumoured to be strongly interested in Bialkowski back in January. However, with Wayne Hennessey signing a new deal at Selhurst Park, interest from the Eagles may well have cooled.
Foderingham would be a solid choice for any Championship side. He has proven himself to be a capable shot-stopper and is one of the most-assured British keepers outside of the Premier League with his feet.
Gerrard’s decision to re-sign Allan McGregor at Ibrox from Championship outfit Hull City is the key reason for Foderingham’s demotion in the Rangers squad. Only last year, the Hammersmith-born ace signed a fresh long-term contract, tying him to the Gers until 2020. However, Gerrard is said to be willing to listen to cut-price offers for Foderingham, which will be music to the ears of Ipswich owner Marcus Evans, who operates a notoriously tight ship at Portman Road.
Other Potential Homes for Foderingham This Summer
If Bialkowski were to have a change of heart and sign a new long-term deal at Ipswich, alternative destinations for Foderingham could include a return to west London and Brentford, with first-choice keeper Daniel Bentley said to be attracting top-flight attention this summer. Fellow west Londoners Queens Park Rangers could also be in the market for a senior keeper with only relative rookies on the books for Steve McClaren at Loftus Road. Foderingham won’t be short of suitors after becoming a fans’ favorite at Ibrox during his time under former Gers supremo Mark Warburton.