Sheepshanks backs Keane

IPSWICH Town chairman David Sheepshanks believes the club is starting to reap the benefits of its loyalty to manager Roy Keane.

IPSWICH Town chairman David Sheepshanks believes the club is starting to reap the benefits of its loyalty to manager Roy Keane.

Saturday's heart-stopping win against Coventry has suddenly got Town fans looking upwards instead of fearing what's behind them at the foot of the Championship table and Sheepshanks believes owner Marcus Evans has been justified in placing his faith in the Irishman.

“As I said at the AGM a few months ago, the first few months of the season were disappointing,” said Sheepshanks, who was unfurling the FA's vision for the National Football Centre at Burton yesterday.

“But I'm sure they're all taking a longer view and hopefully they will be rewarded. Recent results show that could be the case.

“It's a new era for the club and I totally support it. I desperately want Marcus Evans, Simon Clegg and Roy Keane to be successful.”

While a lot of Sheepshanks' energies have been taken up spearheading a consultation process as chairman of the board for the National Football Centre, the ardent Blue still gets to as many Town games as he can.

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Sheepshanks witnessed Pablo Counago's last-gasp winner at Portman Road at the weekend and revealed his pleasure at seeing part of his legacy live on.

“I have been to most Town home games this season and a few away games.

“I'm still a passionate supporter of the club and want to see success as much as any other supporter.

“I was elated to see Pablo (Counago) score on Saturday. He was a player that came to the club when I was chairman - I've always had a soft spot for him and I was totally thrilled to see that piece of pure class.”

Of course, the club is a very different place behind the scenes since Sheepshanks called the shots in the corridors of power at Portman Road.

Fears that Town's long held community club ethos was in danger of being eroded were given more weight with the news that Bryan Klug had left the club last week.

Sheepshanks has always a fervent supporter of Klug and believes the respected coach will be back in the game sooner rather than later.

“I have a huge admiration for Bryan. He has got a reputation as one of the best coaches and developers of young players in the country.

“These things happen - it's sad but I have no doubt that Bryan will land on his feet very quickly.”

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