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Stead: Heart-to-heart talks clear air

PUBLISHED: 16:38 16 October 2009 | UPDATED: 14:45 06 July 2010

JON STEAD today revealed that heart-to-heart talks have taken place at the Ipswich Town training ground over the last two weeks.

The Blues striker is set to make his 50th appearance for the club in tomorrow's Championship game against Swansea at Portman Road (kick-off 3pm).

JON STEAD today revealed that heart-to-heart talks have taken place at the Ipswich Town training ground over the last two weeks.

The Blues striker is set to make his 50th appearance for the club in tomorrow's Championship game against Swansea at Portman Road (kick-off 3pm).

And he says that it was good to get a few things sorted before crucial 'must-win' home games against the Swans and Watford on Tuesday.

Ipswich are still searching for their first league win and are bottom of the table with just five points from 11 games.

Manager Roy Keane will be desperate to gain six points over the next five days as he looks to turn the club round from its current worrying position.

“In the two-week international break we have had meetings and discussions between staff and players,” said Stead, who is still searching for his first goal of the campaign after notching 13 goals from 41 appearances last term.

“It was clear-the-air stuff to an extent with suggestions made to take us forward.

“To help put us in the right direction it was good to have these talks.”

Stead makes no bones that results must improve after what he calls a 'nightmare' start to the season.

“We are not too good to go down,” he added. “You only have to look at Leeds and Newcastle as examples of that.

“But there is no way we are in a relegation fight right now. If we are in the same position at Christmas then I would agree that we would be.

“But like the rest of the club I'm convinced that once we find a win we will move quickly up the table.”

Stead confirmed that he has not knocked on Keane's door despite starting just four matches this season, and reading in August that the manager was unlikely to play him again.

“It was a shock to read that as I had spoken to the manager and knew that was not the case as I have been very much part of the squad,” added Stead, who missed training last week through a virus.

“There have been times in my career when I have knocked on managers' doors, but not this time.

“I trust the manager's judgement, and it is a case of me working hard to gain a regular place.

“It is true that I have not shone like I did last season, but you can say that about the whole squad.

“Only a few can say they currently deserve a place week-in, week-out.

“We need more consistency from players and with two quick games coming up we have a chance to put that right.”

Stead is realistic enough to look towards the January transfer window opening and wonder what this might bring.

Keane let Stead go from Sunderland to Sheffield United for £750,000 in January 2007.

“It has to be on my mind, yes,” said Stead.

“If I am not playing more games by the New Year I might have to look at my options. But not at the moment.

“When I moved to Sheffield United the switch got my career going again.”

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