League One latest: Paul Cook dealt huge play-off blow at Ipswich Town as Doncaster Rovers arrive at key contract moment

Contract talk is dominating Pompey’s promotion rivals today. We’ve wrapped up the latest news for you in our League One round-up.

Friday, 16th April 2021, 12:38 pm

Ipswich make contract Judge-ment

Ipswich Town have been dealt a blow with midfielder Alan Judge likely ruled out for the rest of the season due to contractual reasons.

The 32-year-old is one of 13 senior players out of contract at Portman Road this summer, and the East Anglian Daily Times report that he will be given a new one-year deal if he adds to his 34 starts.

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Former Pompey boss, Paul Cook confirmed the midfielder who had a controversial run-in with referee Darren Drysdale earlier this season will not be up for selection moving forward.

He said: ‘It’s not ideal for us or Alan because I would have liked to have had him available for us over the rest of the season.

‘I told him we are not in a position to trigger that extension to his contract and because of the situation, we won't be considering him for the remaining games.’

Ipswich boss Paul Cook. Picture: Lewis Storey/Getty Images

Donny deadline day

Doncaster Rovers today hit a contract deadline which looks likely to decide the futures of a host of their players.

Talks are taking place with half a dozen of their senior men, with the faltering play-off contenders wanting to know today if they will accept new deals.

Current boss Andy Butler is in the role until the end of the season when the club are expected to make a new appointment, which will bring uncertainty to any players not tied down.

Butler told the Doncaster Free Press: ‘The players we offered contracts to have until Friday to decide whether they want to stay and accept the contracts or let it run until the end of the season.

‘If they do that they risk a new manager coming in and not wanting the players.

‘If I’m not manager, I still want those players alongside me because I know what they can do.

‘That is why the club have used my opinion, along with Adam Henshall’s. With David Blunt (chairman) and Gavin Baldwin (CEO) we came to the decision to offer those players the contracts, because we believe they are good enough to play in League One and higher.’

Dons deal

MK Dons prospect John Freeman has spoken of his ambitions after signing a new deal with his boyhood club.

The 19-year-old midfielder is aiming for more minutes against Pompey’s opponents this weekend, after Russell Martin handed him new terms.

He told the MK Citizen: ‘I’m over the moon,” Freeman said. ‘I’m a fan of the club and I love the club so to be able to sign and remain a part of the process is a dream.

‘I am very grateful to Russ and all the staff for being able to get some game time this season and for the opportunity so far. I definitely have to look at the bigger picture - I want to be in the first team and making a difference as soon as possible but I am nowhere near the finished article yet and this season has been about developing myself.

‘I’d love to play a couple of games before the end of the season but it’s up to me to do work my way in. That’s going to be tough because of the midfielders we’ve got, but I’ve got to fight in training to earn my minutes.’

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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