Brighton ace close to January exit as League One outfit prepares three-year deal

Brighton and Hove Albion continue to fine tune their squad during this January's transfer window

Brighton goalkeeper Christian Walton is closing in on a January move to League One outfit Ipswich Town, having impressed during the first half of his season-long loan.

The 26-year-old stopper from Plymouth is out of contract with Albion this summer and is keen to secure a permanent switch to Suffolk.

Sign up to our daily SussexWorld Today newsletter

January is potentially the last chance for Brighton to receive a transfer fee for a player who has been with the club since 2013.

Brighton goalkeeper Christian Walton has been with Albion since 2013

Walton is highly regarded at Brighton but made just three first team appearances for the Seagulls. He has also had previous loan spells at Bury, Plymouth, Luton, Southend, Wigan and Blackburn.

Ipswich were in danger of missing out on Walton as Brighton earlier this month triggered a recall clause on his loan. It prompted Ipswich to act swiftly and negotiations now appear to be reaching a successful conclusion.

It is thought Ipswich will pay a small transfer fee for the former England under-21 and Walton is set to a agree a three year deal with the Suffolk outfit.

Walton has enjoyed working with new Ipswich boss Kieran McKenna and goalkeeping coach Rene Gilmartin - who he knows from his time at Plymouth. It is said Gilmartin played a key role in persuading Walton to join the club who are 11th in League One.

Brighton are also remain keen for their No 3 goalkeeper Kjell Scherpen to leave on loan this January. Scherpen, 21, arrived for £4.5m from Ajax last summer and made his first team debut for Graham Potter's team in their recent FA Cup win against West Brom.

Any move for the 6ft 8in Dutch youth international has however been placed on hold due to a back injury to Albion's No 2 Jason Steele.

Scherpen will now be on the bench as understudy to Brighton's No 1 Rob Sanchez for Tuesday night's Premier League clash with Chelsea.