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De Vos fears losing boss Magilton


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De Vos fears losing boss Magilton

By Sarah Holt


Ipswich captain Jason De Vos says the club must hang on to rookie manager Jim Magilton amid speculation he is next in line for the Northern Ireland job.

Lawrie Sanchez, on a short-term deal as Fulham boss, is expected to stand down as Northern Ireland manager after this year's Euro 2008 qualifiers.

De Vos told BBC Sport: "It wouldn't surprise me if Jim was linked with that kind of job but we want him here.

"We are trying to build for the coming seasons - it doesn't happen overnight."

Magilton was appointed Ipswich boss in June last year after finishing his playing career with a seven-year spell at Portman Road.

After a shaky start to the season, the former Northern Ireland international has guided the club to 14th in the Championship in his first season at the helm.

Magilton was installed as 7-2 favourite to succeed Sanchez, but De Vos, who took over from Magilton as club captain, says he is key to Ipswich's promotion ambitions next season.

"It isn't easy going from being a player to a manager but Jim has taken it in his stride," added De Vos.

"Jim has done a great job in his first season in management and has brought in a lot of new, young players.

"The steps he is taking to make this club better are progressive and hopefully we can carry that into next season. We are confident we can be up there challenging."

De Vos, 33, is also on course to return to the heart of defence at the start of the next campaign after surgery on a fractured metatarsal.

"I had surgery two weeks ago and it was a fantastic success," the former Canada international said. "My foot is 100% better.

"It isn't nice to miss the last few games of the season but I am on course for being ready for next season."

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