Ipswich manager Paul Jewell has admitted that a deal to bring Danny Collins back to the club looks unlikely to materialise.
The defender moved to Portman Road on loan from Stoke in September but his three-month spell came to an end after the recent 1-0 home win over Derby.
Collins performed well during his time with Town and Jewell had been keen to sort out a permanent contract, with the 31-year-old a long way down the pecking order at Stoke.
However, Jewell accepts that Collins may prefer to join a different club closer to home so that he is not apart from his wife and newborn son.
"We haven't had a lot of encouragement," Jewell told the Green'Un.
"Danny is in a situation where he's just become a father so understandably he wants something better geographically.
"I spoke to him before he left and thanked him, told him we'd like to bring him here, but he gave me the impression that he's looking for something else.
"I don't think it's anything to do with us as a club, it's just he wants to be nearer his family.
"That could change, but he still has over a year left on a Premier League contract and I've just got the impression that it might be more difficult than I first thought."
Jewell is keen to strengthen his squad in January and has not given up hope of keeping Blackburn midfielder Keith Andrews.
The Republic of Ireland international has impressed during his loan spell with Ipswich and Jewell would like to take him permanently, but first he needs to find out just how much Blackburn are asking for his signature.
"It's not easy speaking to Blackburn, but the agent assures me that 'he thinks' he can be a free," said Jewell. "That's what we need to establish before anything can move on.
"Keith has told me again that he doesn't want to be a squad player; he doesn't want to go to the Premier League and not play.
"He's 31, he's got the European Championships coming up in the summer and he needs to be playing.
"We'd like to keep him here, but at the end of the day he's got to do what's right for Keith Andrews both personally and professionally. I fully understand that."