Jim: forget about manager's award

IPSWICH chief Jim Magilton today insisted that the last thing on his mind is the possibility of being crowned Manager of the Month.Rookie bosses Magilton and his Colchester counterpart, ex-Town star Geraint Williams, both go into tonight's game at Layer Road as leading contenders for the September accolade.

By Mel Henderson

IPSWICH chief Jim Magilton today insisted that the last thing on his mind is the possibility of being crowned Manager of the Month.

Rookie bosses Magilton and his Colchester counterpart, ex-Town star Geraint Williams, both go into tonight's game at Layer Road as leading contenders for the September accolade.

Defeat for either will wreck their chances but Magilton said: “I've a hundred and one things on my mind and being Manager of the Month definitely isn't one of them.


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“In fact, it's probably the furthest thing from my mind at the moment and I bet if you asked Geraint he would say that he feels exactly the same.”

Both bosses are looking to protect unbeaten records this month and their only serious rival for the award is Preston boss Paul Simpson, who has seen his side claim ten points from a possible 12.

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Should the Lilywhites lose tomorrow at Stoke, tonight's winning manager will be an automatic favourite to land the award.

And if the clubs' first league meeting in 50 seasons ends all square, Magilton will be in pole position since Town have taken ten points to the U's eight during September.

Meanwhile, Magilton must decide whether to recall suspended star Alex Bruce for the short journey down the A12.

He has another poser now that midfield pair Simon Walton and Sylvain Legwinski, both of whom were ruled out of last week's home win over Sunderland with hamstring injuries, are fit again.

But no matter his starting line-up, Magilton dismissed the notion that his players might feel dispirited by the modest surroundings at Layer Road.

He said: “Plenty of them have experienced it in the past and it won't be a problem to them. The only thing that matters is the pitch and the playing surface is outstanding.

“Hopefully we can get the ball down and pass it, although we'll need to earn the right to play. It is going to be a real battle between two in-form teams.”

Colchester, unbeaten in their last five league games to Town's six, are expected to stick with the same side that earned a valuable point courtesy of a goalless draw at Leicester last week.

SQUADS

COLCHESTER: Davison, Halford, Baldwin, Brown, Barker, Garcia, Watson, Izzet, Duguid, Iwelumo, Cureton, White, Guy, G Richards, Jackson, McLeod, Elokobi and Gerken.

IPSWICH: Price, Sito, De Vos, Naylor, Harding, Bruce, Williams, Walton, Noble, Currie, Legwinski, Lee, Macken, Wilnis, M Richards, Clarke, Bowditch and Supple.

REFEREE: Lee Probert (Gloucester).

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