Town legends back the Blues

TWO IPSWICH Town heroes have today thrown their weight behind the Super Blues' bid to thwart Lancashire promotion rivals Wigan and jump into the Premiership.

TWO IPSWICH Town heroes have today thrown their weight behind the Super Blues' bid to thwart Lancashire promotion rivals Wigan and jump into the Premiership.

Former England international Kevin Beattie and Wembley 2000 goal-scorer Tony Mowbray have backed Ipswich to triumph in their crunch Sunday showdown with Brighton and Hove Albion and secure their place back in the big time after a three-year absence.

Beattie, a defensive lynchpin, donned the famous blue shirt of Ipswich Town during some of the best times Portman Road has ever seen - and believes Joe Royle is the man to bring back the glory days.

Voted as the club's greatest ever player, he said: “They shouldn't even think about what's going on at Wigan.


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“If the right result comes off then that's great, but if it doesn't then the team have to get on with it and prepare for the next few games.”

With Wigan and Town locked on 82 points, Ipswich need to win at Brighton and hope Reading can do Town a favour by taking a point or three from the Latics.

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Beattie said: “For the players, the fans and the business people too, it would be great. Everybody in Ipswich would be given a huge boost. It would be wonderful to see all the superstars back playing at Portman Road.

“This is all about the fans because if it were not for them, there would be no football club. They have stuck by the club and they deserve a big pat on the back for their tremendous support.

“I won't make any predictions for Sunday but if we win 1-0 or 10-0 I won't care as long as Town go up.”

Mowbray, a former player, coach and caretaker manager at Ipswich, shared 'The Beats' sense of excitement.

He said: “It was less than a season ago I left Ipswich after nine years with the club so I still very much consider myself a fan.

“I'm confident Ipswich will win their game and Wigan have shown signs of nervousness of late.

“I've watched all the Ipswich games that have been on television and I wouldn't say those performances have done Ipswich justice but they just have to be focused, for all the fans going to the game, watching it on television or listening to the radio.”

The Hibernian manager is celebrating being named the Scottish manager of the year after steering the club to the brink of a third place finish in the SPL table.

After being involved in Ipswich's successful play-off campaign in 2000, he said losing out on automatic promotion should not spell misery.

He said: “If there was some way of guaranteeing success, the play-offs are the best way to go up. “There's such an amazing atmosphere and Cardiff is a fantastic stadium.”

Are you backing the Blues to reach the Premiership? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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