Mariner to jet in for FA Cup party

FORMER Ipswich Town goal machine Paul Mariner today confirmed he will be jetting across the Atlantic to join the 30th anniversary celebrations of the Blues' FA Cup triumph.

FORMER Ipswich Town goal machine Paul Mariner today confirmed he will be jetting across the Atlantic to join the 30th anniversary celebrations of the Blues' FA Cup triumph.

The ex-Town ace is currently living in the States, where he is second in command at the New England Revolution soccer team.

But he will be back on Suffolk soil once again on May 5 - joined by the rest of Sir Bobby Robson's cup-winning heroes - to mark a very special occasion.

An old-fashioned number nine, Mariner arrived from Plymouth in 1976 and quickly endeared himself to the Portman Road faithful with a string of important goals.

On the road to Wembley in '78, the 54-year-old hit the back of the net seven times - including a hat-trick in the 6-1 quarter-final drubbing of Millwall.

Along with his fellow legends - including John Wark, Roger Osborne and Scotland boss George Burley - Mariner is set to attend 30 Years of Honour - a day dedicated to Town's remarkable achievement.

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The Evening Star and BBC Radio Suffolk have teamed up to stage the event - and are offering Blues fans the opportunity to enjoy the special anniversary festivities with their cup idols.

Supporters can register their interest in buying a table at a special gala dinner at the town hall, followed by a chance to relive the magical day when match highlights are screened.

The dinner will follow an open top bus tour through Ipswich, finishing on the Cornhill where thousands of fans are expected to gather to honour their heroes.

It is hoped the original Cup final programme will be reproduced for the occasion and talks are ongoing to bring the FA Cup back to Suffolk.

Fans wishing to register their names for a chance of dining with their cup heroes on May 5 should contact Michelle Dorrell by calling 01473 324867 or e-mailing michelle.dorrell@archant.co.uk. Tables cost £1,000 for ten people, while individual non-dining tickets cost £50.

Tell us your FA Cup memories. Write to the Evening Star Newsdesk, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail starnews@eveningstar.co.uk

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