Heavy Showers

Heavy Showers

max temp: 11°C

min temp: 4°C

Search
Kings of Anglia Issue 8 Magazine Offer

It’s vital to put off-field issues aside and back Ipswich Town’s players until we’re safe

PUBLISHED: 06:00 30 March 2017 | UPDATED: 11:30 30 March 2017

Town fans cheer their side on Carrow Road last month.

Town fans cheer their side on Carrow Road last month.

Pagepix Ltd.07976 935738

It’s been one of Ipswich Town’s worst seasons for 60 years, and relegation to League One remains a threat, writes editor-in-chief and life-long Ipswich fan Terry Hunt.

Jonas Knudsen gave fans something to celebrate at NorwichJonas Knudsen gave fans something to celebrate at Norwich

Supporters are unhappy with the style of play, a lack of investment, and season ticket prices going up. But, with two crucial home games looming, it’s more important than ever to get behind the team.

I know many people are justifiably unhappy with the situation at Portman Road. The football has been dull, the manager’s tactics, and comments, have distanced him from the fans, lots of supporters feel the owner doesn’t invest enough and, on top of it all, season ticket prices are going up.

In 50 seasons of supporting the team, I’ve never known more disenchantment among the fans. Let’s face it, we’re normally a pretty patient bunch!

But, despite all of the above, there has never been a time when it’s been more important for us, the blue and white army, to get behind the team. We have two huge home games coming up, against Birmingham and Wigan. Two wins, and relegation will no longer be a concern. Anything less than four points, though, and we’ll still be worrying.

We arrive at these games in pretty poor form, short on confidence and with two key players – Tom Lawrence and David McGoldrick – likely to be missing through injury. With so many fans feeling disgruntled, there’s a danger of a perfect storm brewing.

If Saturday doesn’t go to plan, and especially if Birmingham go ahead, there’s a risk of the atmosphere turning poisonous, and that really is the last thing the players need.

Tom Lawrence will be missing against BlackburnTom Lawrence will be missing against Blackburn

That’s why it’s crucial all of us who really love our football club leave of our off-field issues at the turnstiles, and get behind the players.

If the team starts struggling or – heaven forbid – losing, then we need to cheer even louder. There is no point in turning on players.

Booing and jeering, or calling for the manager’s head, or for the owner to go, will achieve absolutely nothing. It can only have a negative impact.

Let’s be clear about this – relegation to League One would be a disaster. Don’t listen to those misguided people who try to tell you that it might be a blessing in disguise. Look at Norwich, and Southampton, they say.

I would counter that by using the examples of Sheffield United, now in their sixth season in the old third division. Even mighty Leeds spent three years down there.

How excited would you be by games against Rochdale, Bury, and Northampton? No disrespect to any of those clubs, but they have spent the vast majority of their time playing in the lower leagues.

Captain Luke Chambers always tries to get the fans fired upCaptain Luke Chambers always tries to get the fans fired up

Ipswich haven’t been in the third division since May 1957, when I was only a few weeks old. I’ve just celebrated my 60th birthday. Yes, it’s that long ago – way beyond the memories of the majority of supporters.

In League One, crowds would inevitably dwindle even further, TV cash would drop, and we would become a smaller club financially.

Whatever you think of club owner Marcus Evans’ investment policy now, the finances would certainly become even tighter if the unthinkable happened and we went down.

It’s crucial we win these next two games, and the fans can play a part in making that happen.

So, whatever you think of how our club is being run at the moment, whatever you think of Mick McCarthy’s tactics, and his often frankly daft utterances after games, whether you’re renewing your season ticket or not, please get along to Portman Road on Saturday afternoon and Tuesday evening, and cheer the boys on. If it starts going badly, then cheer even louder.

Let’s make sure we stay in the Championship, and then the inquests can start on what’s gone so badly wrong this season.

Fresh concerns have been raised over the quality of Suffolk schools as the latest data has revealed soaring numbers are being judged ‘inadequate’ or ‘requires improvement’ by Ofsted.

A village is set to get a fourth defibrillator after a landlord saved the life of a man who suffered a heart attack in his pub.

A 17-year-old girl was among those arrested after armed police raided two homes on Allenby Road in Ipswich.

More than 400 runners took to Felixstowe prom this morning to take on a 10 mile race along the seafront. Can you spot yourself in our gallery?

A kind, family-focused Suffolk mum who died aged just 38 is being remembered at a fundraising ball in her name.

Watch our video of this £500,000 Victorian property which has a wine store and a walk in wardrobe.

Police have seized a car in the centre of Ipswich as it was unroadworthy and didn’t have the correct insurance.

This week Suffolk Saab owners have been discussing why they love the Swedish vehicles on Twitter while Ipswich Town fans have been paying tribute to the late, great Kevin Beattie.

More than 200 services have been delayed on Greater Anglia’s main line this weekend - with unforeseen maintenance issues compounding disruption caused by planned works on the track to London Liverpool Street.

Leave extra time for your journey if it’s likely to be affected by roadworks.

Most read

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Ipswich Star daily newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

MyDate24 MyPhotos24