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Garbutt: Everything is Complicated
Wednesday, 29th Apr 2020 11:01

Blues loanee Luke Garbutt has been reflecting on his complicated immediate future with both his Everton contract and Town spell up at the end of June and football in a state of uncertainty due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Garbutt, 26, is certain to leave Goodison Park this summer and said earlier in the season that he might be keen on a permanent move to the Blues, although hinting that might be more likely if the Blues were promoted. TWTD understands a number of Championship sides were keeping tabs on him during the season.

The EFL currently hopes to complete the 2019/20 campaign behind closed doors over 56 days from June 6th but with many players’ contracts - including Garbutt’s Everton deal and Ipswich loan - up on June 30th. Earlier this month, FIFA agreed an arrangement whereby contracts ending at the end of June will automatically be extended until the point when the season is eventually concluded.

But given the uncertain outlook and with many clubs having financial worries, the likes of Garbutt are in limbo.

“Everything is complicated,“ Garbutt told The Athletic. “Clubs are a little bit reluctant to talk to players as they’re just trying to get the season finished in the safest way possible.

“I’ve just got to wait and then look to perform well and do the things I’m doing in the summer to get a move, whether that be Ipswich or elsewhere.

“You’ve just got to live your life as you can and try not to think about whether I’m going to find another club or what happens if the season is extended.

“As a professional footballer you’ve just got to make sure you maintain your mental and physical health as best possible. It’s a difficult time for footballers but it’s insignificant in relation to what else is going on.”

Former England U21 international Garbutt, who has made 29 starts and one sub appearance for the Blues, scoring six times, has been pleased with his form during his spell at Portman Road.

“I’ve really enjoyed my time there,” he continued. “ I’ve managed to do quite well and play a lot of games whereas at other clubs I’ve been in and out of the team. I’ve found a bit of clarity at Ipswich and I’m improving.

“I’m pleased from a personal point of view but we haven’t kicked on like we would have wanted. It’s a brilliant club and it’s just a shame that it’s down in League One.”

Reflecting further on his future, he says he could consider a move abroad: “I’m open to a new culture and country if the football side was in line with my ambition.

“If the move suits then 100 per cent I’d do that. I’d like to play at the highest level possible.

"The good thing for me this season is that I’ve enjoyed my football and it’s been positive. I’d like to continue that trend at the highest level possible.”

Meanwhile, asked by a fan on Twitter whether he’d feel safe playing football in the current circumstances, Garbutt said: “This pandemic is bigger than football mate, I just hope everyone is staying safe, then hopefully when it’s safe to do so we can all get back to playing and watching football again.”

Elsewhere, ex-Blues midfielder Conor Hourihane has been reflecting on his spell at Town during which time he failed to make a first-team appearance.

The 29-year-old, who went on to represent the Republic of Ireland and is currently with Aston Villa, followed his old Sunderland manager Roy Keane to Portman Road in July 2010 but was unable to make an impact.

Having been offered a six-month contract extension by Keane's successor Paul Jewell the following summer he moved on to Plymouth.

“If I’m being brutally honest then I probably wasn’t ready,” he told The Athletic. “Looking back. I probably felt that moving from Sunderland to Ipswich, dropping a league, would mean I would get the games I always wanted.

“I was naïve to the Championship as well and having now played in it for many years I know it’s a fantastic league with fantastic players. I wasn’t ready at the time.

“Roy being under pressure might have played a part in it. If he had been a bit more comfortable then I might have got some game-time, who knows? There were many factors why I didn’t play there really.

“It didn’t work out but I enjoyed my year there, it was a fantastic club, and it ultimately helped me get to where I am today.”

Photo: TWTD

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Radlett_blue added 11:12 - Apr 29
"I’d like to continue that trend at the highest level possible.”
Sounds like he won't be signing permanently for Town then & no wonder we couldn't do a deal in January.

algarvefan added 11:41 - Apr 29
I'm probably going to be slagged off for this but after a stellar start I think some of his performances have been very average, but I suppose you could include most of the team in that analogy!!
Never thought we would keep him, one of the problem with loans when you Have no cash to splash. I still say we should stick with our own younger players and build a team that plays like a team. But then what do I know, just my opinion.

JDAndCoke added 12:06 - Apr 29
One thing that is not in doubt is that Garbutt improves our team. If he goes, we have Kenlock as backup who unfortunately isn't anywhere near LG standard. We have also cried out for a decent set piece taker for years which finally we have in LG. Can't blame him for wanting to play in the Championship/highest level, he's certainly good enough to play Championship football.

All of that said, I think he is replaceable. A 20 goal a season striker or a playmaker is very hard to replace, especially on a L1 budget. A left back arguably is a position that you can compromise on slightly, in order to strengthen elsewhere.

MattinLondon added 12:07 - Apr 29
Going forward he offers a lot - especially at L1 level but isn’t defensively he isn’t as good - a victim (possibly not the best word to use) of PL still not knowing his best XI.

Unfortunately it looks like he won’t be staying for next season - whenever it starts.

DurhamTownFan added 12:35 - Apr 29
Definitely off then. A really important position for next year. Kenlock is ok, but he’s yet to break into the team consistently under a few managers now, and I think should move on like Emmanuel did.

Is there a decent LB available on a free anywhere? If not, we’re screwed

Ipswichbusiness added 13:06 - Apr 29
Apparently at Everton he is on a salary of nearly £1.5 million.

I can’t see us paying anything like that for a left-back, so he either takes a pay cut or we look for an alternative.

Hopefully our scouts were busy before the break!

Garv added 13:13 - Apr 29
For his delivery and quality on the ball, I think there's an argument that Garbutt has underachieved. But he's still scored six goals from full/wing back so you can't grumble too much.

I'd like a full time left back to be brought in when possible but I'd happily take Garbutt too, it's just a case of nailing down a position. He's probably best in a Tabb type left midfield role.

ArnieM added 13:16 - Apr 29
It really ISNT complicated . Garbutt wants to play at the highest level . When he came to Town on loan he thought we’d be a championship club and get promotion . A nice little stepping stone . He would be happy to sign for us . Now it’s clear we’re a League One side for at least another season, suddenly , the “ I want to stay here” crap isn’t being said so loudly .

Jog on Mr Garbutt, we’ll use our own youngsters.

MickMillsTash added 14:04 - Apr 29
As always it will all be about Money.

did he put the ball in for Norwood at Wycombe? - we would miss his quality

ITFCsince73 added 14:31 - Apr 29
I think we proved with KVY that 500k can get you a full back.
Although that deal wouldn’t have happened if PL didn’t kick up a stink.
The days of Town spending even 100k on a player are over...

planetblue_2011 added 15:44 - Apr 29
Garbutt is a good player 6 goals to his name & a brilliant left foot but can’t see us signing him. We probably do need a bargain player like KVY coming in. Don’t think Kenlock is quite the answer sadly!!

Saxonblue74 added 16:26 - Apr 29
Perhaps Garbutt and other average footballers will have to take a reality check, like the rest of the working world! I'd really love to think this whole situation may have a positive effect on the game, by being negative.......if that makes any sense at all!!! The game as a whole needs financially reigning in to a huge extent, player power needs to be reduced and clubs put back in control of their own destiny. Garbutt, don't get greedy, sign a deal and maybe, just maybe we can start to build a squad once more!

ArnieM added 17:06 - Apr 29
Spot on Saxonblue but many won’t want to hear it, least of all the players.

There seems to be a hue NBC and scary that “1000 EFL players will be out of contract in the summer (and that due to CoVid 19 restraints on Clubs), May be out of work” . Really ? Well welcome to the real world you footballers . You’re not different from any one else.

Linkboy13 added 17:08 - Apr 29
No chance of him staying although not sure he's good enough to play in the championship this would be a big step up for him physically. One player who i think is good enough to play in the championship is KVY, and if he hadn't of got injured we could well of lost him as well and in my opinion a far better player than Garbutt.

Cloddyseedbed added 17:21 - Apr 29
I think players out of contract are going to find negotiating new well paid contracts harder to come by in the future. Many clubs will struggle or maybe worse. This should now be a reality check for ALL football clubs and players. Reduce your spending on wages and cut out stupendus transfers fee's. The people at the top of world football need to address this. Football needs to be in a healthy state throughout the leagues. Not just a few fat cats at the top getting all the cream. Money needs to filter down throughout the leagues. If the FA tries to do it in UK alone, players will go to other countries. It needs to be a worldwide plan implemented for the good of football throughout the world. No better time to start than the new season! Regarding getting a new left back, yes a priority, see if KVY has a left footed brother. This is what our scouts are supposed to be doing, looking for replacements, not just in this country either.

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