You have to go back 10 years to find a better start to an Ipswich Town season
PUBLISHED: 16:44 09 November 2017
Ipswich Town’s start to the 2017/18 season is one they have not bettered for a decade.
The Blues currently sit eighth in the Championship table, two points off the play-off places with a game in hand on many of those around them, having amassed a total of 24 points from their first 15 games.
That total of 24 points is the same number taken from the first 15 games of the 2014/15 season, in which the Blues ultimately made the play-offs, while they also hit the same mark in 2010/11 when Roy Keane began well before tailing off and being replaced by Paul Jewell, who guided the Blues to a 13th-place finish.
Mick McCarthy’s total of eight wins this time around is the most an Ipswich side have taken from 15 games in a decade, with the Blues losing the other seven and extending their run of league games without a draw to 22.
To put that into context the start to McCarthy’s play-off season garnered just six wins, while Keane’s effort produced just seven.
But to find a better start you have to go all the way back to the 2007/08 season, when Jim Magilton oversaw an opening 15 games which saw the Blues claim 25 points.
It all began so well as Ipswich got off and running with a 4-1 victory over Sheffield Wednesday, in which Alan Lee scored twice and Pablo Counago and Gary Roberts also netted, before wins over Crystal Palace, Coventry, Preston and Wolves all followed.
Game number 15 saw the memorable 6-0 demolition of Bristol City, in which Jon Walters scored a hat-trick, but Magilton’s side were not quite able to keep the pace and ultimately finished 8th.
Twenty one points were taken from the first 15 games the following season, in which Magilton was ultimately sacked and replaced by Roy Keane.
The former Manchester United manager’s first full season in charge started in disastrous fashion, as the Blues had to wait until the 15th league game to register their first win, as he claimed just 11 points from that opening run.
Keane turned things around somewhat, with his second season beginning with 24 points from 15 matches, but things turned sour and he was replaced by Paul Jewell, who had his own calamitous opening in 2012/13 which ultimately saw him sacked and replaced by McCarthy.
Last season’s haul of 18 points from 15 games was McCarthy’s worst as Ipswich boss, but this time around he has equalled the total which went on to help his side make the play-offs in 2015.
It remains to be seen if the Blues can keep the pace this time around.