Ipswich look to have been dealt a blow with the news Danny Higginbotham is now unlikely to remain on loan at Portman Road for the remainder of the season.

Town on Friday agreed an extended deal with Stoke for the defender, who arrived at the start of September on a deal until the new year.

But Higginbotham, 34, who has made 12 appearances for the npower Championship club, now looks set for a move elsewhere after rival clubs showed interest in his services.

Manager Mick McCarthy told Ipswich's official website: "We had agreed a deal with Danny to stay but there has been interest in him from other clubs.

"That comes as no surprise as he's a terrific professional and that's why we wanted to keep him here.

"He wants the chance to earn a permanent move and preferably something which is closer to his home.

"I can understand that and if it works out for him then I wish him all the best of luck."