Ipswich Town’s promotion bid has been dealt a major blow with striker James Norwood set to be sidelined until April, as reported by the club’s official site.
Norwood, who has scored 11 goals in 28 league outings for Ipswich this campaign, underwent surgery for the second time this season on Friday morning on an adductor problem. Norwood had previously gone under the knife during the October international break due to a different groin issue.
“It’s a blow for us and for James,” Ipswich boss Paul Lambert told the Club website.
“It has been niggling away at him for a while. He’ll be back before the end of the season but it’s something we have to get sorted.”
Norwood, who arrived in the summer on a free from Tranmere Rovers, will be hoping to be back fit and raring to go for the final few games of the season. Having secured back-to-back promotions with Tranmere, the striker will be hoping to make it three on the spin with the Tractor Boys.
Although this is a big blow for Ipswich, perhaps the surgery has actually come at a good time. Norwood has looked short of confidence in recent weeks and Ipswich fans will be hoping the surgery could prove a catalyst to an upturn in form.
Since his last goal in open play against Accrington Stanley on 11th January, Norwood has only started in three of the following eight matches.
In that time, Paul Lambert has favoured the pairing of Will Keane and Kayden Jackson in attack. However, Norwood is certainly Ipswich’s most complete striker, the talisman of the side. Kayden Jackson offers lightning quick pace and plays on the shoulder of the defensive, while Will Keane likes to drop into midfield and link up play rather than going in behind.
The pair will burden much of the expectation to fire Ipswich to promotion and with only Freddie Sears, who has only just returned from a ACL injury, waiting in the wings, will that be enough to keep Ipswich in the promotion push until Norwood returns?