Ipswich chief makes departures admission amid Portsmouth's reported interest in Teddy Bishop
Chief executive Mark Ashton revealed Ipswich's focus in the summer transfer window has turned largely towards shifting out players amid Pompey's reported interest in Teddy Bishop.
The midfielder is surplus to requirements at Portman Road – along with Flynn Downes, Kayden Jackson and Myles Kenlock – as Paul Cook conducts his Portman Road overhaul.
The quartet have been banished to train with the under-23s during pre-season and featured in the first half of a 1-1 friendly draw with Bury Town on Tuesday night.
Having recruited seven fresh faces including beating the Blues to the signing for striker Joe Pigott, the Tractor Boys now want to start reducing their squad size.
Pompey have been linked with Bishop and Danny Cowley admitted the 24-year-old's a 'nice footballer' when asked about the rumours.
League One rivals Lincoln and MK Dons, as well as Scottish Premiership side Hearts, have also been credited with interest.
Ashton told the East Anglian Daily Times: ‘People understandably get excited about the players coming in but what you mustn’t underestimate is the amount of work that goes into the players moving out. Those deals don’t just happen and it's a vast amount of work.
‘That’s where a lot of the focus is going.
‘That takes time, energy and relationships that you fall back on with agents and clubs. Thus far we’ve done really well with the players we’ve moved out as well as in.
‘I’m really happy with the business we’ve done and a couple more could move on.
‘Having players out of contract helped but there were others we wanted to move because we wanted to go in a different direction and it was time for them to have a different challenge.
‘That doesn’t mean they are particularly bad people or bad players, it just doesn’t fit what Paul wants to do.’
Michael Jacobs could head the opposite way, with Ipswich expressing interest in the Pompey winger.
He worked with Paul Cook when Wigan captured the League One title in the 2017-2018 season.
Jacobs is continuing his rehabilitation from knee surgery but has travelled to St George's Park for this week's training camp.
Reports in East Anglia suggest a swap deal involving Bishop and Jacobs isn't beyond the realms of possibility.