Ipswich Wanderers host Whitton United tonight

Glenn Read

Glenn Read - Credit: Ashley Pickering/Anglia Picture

Ipswich’s biggest non-league clubs go head to head tonight, looking to kick-start their seasons (7.45 KO).

Ipswich Wanderers host Whitton United in the first round of the Thurlow Nunn League Cup at Humber Doucy Lane – the duo struggling at the bottom end of the Premier Division, the former being a point better off with two games in hand.

The rivalry between the teams has intensified in the last few seasons, with a significant moment being when United pipped Wanderers to the Division One title and Suffolk Senior Cup in May 2014.

Since then, Wanderers have had the upper-hand, Glenn Read’s side winning both meetings (2-0 and 4-1) in the clubs’ first seasons back at Premier Division level last term.

Whitton boss Glenn Snell is certainly determined to get one over on his former boss at Woodbridge Town, Read.

Snell, who was assistant manager to Paul Bugg at Whitton, prior to the latter’s departure in the summer, said: “Despite all the success Paul and myself had (at Whitton), we did not get the better of Wanderers much.

“It would be nice to start turning that record round, not just against Wanderers, but also our other local rivals as in recent years, we have always seemed to get beat or draw.

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“While the league is our priority, on a lot of occasions this season we have had a losing mentality, so a win in any competition would be welcome.

“We both seem to be suffering second-season syndrome. I have been through the mill trying to put a squad together, while Glenn (Read) has had some departures too. It’s not been easy on either of us but, come May, I am sure we will be away from trouble.”

Read is keen for his side to put together a good run in the competition won by Norwich United last season, but his main focus also remains the league.

“It’s a cup we could win, but having said that, I have used the competition in the past to give playing time to lads who have not been playing as regularly,” he said.

With a dearth of football fixtures tonight, due to the international fortnight, Read thinks the clash is an ideal opportunity for people to get a taste of Step Five football.

Read added: “It will be an entertaining advert for non-league.

“We got the better of them last season, but the year before, they had the upper-hand.

“I am sure people coming along will see both teams put on a display full of commitment.”