Town stars in tribute to Sir Alf
SOME of Ipswich Town's title-winning heroes will feature in a television tribute to their boss, Sir Alf Ramsey, tonight.Channel 4 is screening a documentary, Sir Alf, at 9pm – the latest of an in-depth series turning the spotlight on leading football figures.
By Mel Henderson
SOME of Ipswich Town's title-winning heroes will feature in a television tribute to their boss, Sir Alf Ramsey, tonight.
Channel 4 is screening a documentary, Sir Alf, at 9pm – the latest of an in-depth series turning the spotlight on leading football figures.
And they don't come much bigger than the man who transformed Town before keeping his promise to win the World Cup for England.
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Sir Alf, who died three years ago, may have shunned the media spotlight, resulting in several angry confrontations, but he was much admired by those who played for him.
Just as the boys of '66 won't hear a word said against him, it is the same with those players who put Ipswich firmly on the map 40 years ago.
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Ipswich staged a special reunion at Portman Road a few weeks ago to celebrate the 40th anniversary of one of football's biggest-ever shocks.
Ramsey's team stunned the football world by following up their Second Division title in 1961 by sweeping all before them to land the League Championship one year later at their very first attempt.
It was a dramatic turnaround in fortune for Ipswich, who were a Third Division (South) outfit when Ramsey took charge in 1955 after a distinguished playing career with Tottenham and England.
His impact was immediate, Town finishing third in his first season and then winning the Third Division (South) crown the following year.
The film-makers were represented at the reunion party and interviewed a number of the players who featured in that success.
They also spoke to long-serving club employee Pat Godbold, now retired after serving as secretary to a succession of Town managers dating back to the pre-Ramsey era.
Newly-knighted Sir Bobby Robson, who has so much in common with Sir Alf, will also feature in tonight's programme.
Like Sir Alf, he managed Ipswich and England before being honoured and he said: "I always admired and respected him and his feats in football, both for club and country.
"What he did in his time as Ipswich manager was a colossal achievement. He had a football wisdom second to none."