Town tried to stop ticket sales to U's

IPSWICH Town today revealed that “hundreds” of Colchester United supporters were thwarted in their attempts to buy seats among the home fans - although tickets for Saturday's derby at Portman Road were still available on the turnstiles.

IPSWICH Town today revealed that “hundreds” of Colchester United supporters were thwarted in their attempts to buy seats among the home fans - although tickets for Saturday's derby at Portman Road were still available on the turnstiles.

Bosses said that the club had made it “difficult” for those trying to buy seats in the run up to the game who were not registered on its database.

However, Ipswich opted to allow supporters to buy tickets on the day.

A handful of Blues fans complained that dozens of away fans sat in the home areas, allegedly creating a hostile and intimidating atmosphere in the game which the home team won 3-2.

Terry Baxter, Ipswich Town's director of communications, said the club was fully investigating how away fans bought tickets in areas reserved for home support.

However, he said: “We caught hundreds of Colchester United fans trying to buy tickets in the Ipswich areas.

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“But it is very difficult. There are lots of people living in CO postcode areas who support Ipswich one week and go to Layer Road the next.”

He said Colchester and Ipswich had made an agreement at the beginning of the season that both clubs would allocate ten per cent of their respective capacities for away fans.

Town fan Sam Durham has written to Ipswich Town complaining after a group of around 20 U's fans bought tickets in the Greene King Lower stand and allegedly abused spectators with foul language and aggressive behaviour.

He said a four-year-old girl was reduced to tears after her dad was allegedly verbally abused when he asked one United supporter to sit down and behave.

Mr Durham said in his letter: “The amount of abuse and insults we received was beyond a joke.

“If this is to continue, myself and my family will just refuse to go. It's not the first time it's happened but this is by far the worst case.”

Another Ipswich supporter, who also sat in the Greene King Lower stand said a small scuffle broke out at the end of the game.

He continued: “How did they get to sit in the ground when most were wearing clubs colours?”

The 28,355 crowd was the Blues largest of the season, eclipsing the Norwich derby match by more than 1,000.

A spokesman for Suffolk police said there were no arrests during the game, but 12 people were ejected from the ground. There were two post-match arrests.

Could the club have done more to prevent away fans infiltrating the home sections of Portman Road? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk