Jim is hoping for a Rangers repeat

JIM Magilton wants a Rangers re-run when his Ipswich Town side face the biggest challenge of their Championship season on Saturday.

By Elvin King

JIM Magilton wants a Rangers re-run when his Ipswich Town side face the biggest challenge of their Championship season on Saturday.

The Tractor Boys' position became all the more precarious last night when arch-rivals Norwich climbed above them following a dramatic last-gasp win at Luton, another side threatened with the drop.

Recent signing Simon Lappin netted his first goal for the Canaries in the fourth minute of stoppage time to give them a 3-2 victory.

Norwich are now two points and places better off than Magilton's men - and they also have a game in hand - while Luton remain three points behind Ipswich and have played one game more.

Ipswich have a great chance to improve their lowly position when fellow strugglers QPR come to town on Saturday.

Most Read

The Blues manager, who revealed today that his main aim in life is to get Portman Road bouncing again, leads his team into weekend action against Queens Park Rangers.

Victory will put welcome daylight between Magilton's team and the danger zone.

Defeat will see Town slip even deeper into relegation trouble.

A confident Magilton said: “Our 3-1 win at Loftus Road on August 25 typified all that I am trying to achieve.

“We went a goal down, but then rose to the occasion showing character and a desire to succeed.

“It was a perfect example of how we want to be every week.

“I shall be looking for a similar performance this Saturday.”

Although Rangers have won just once in their last nine matches - three times in their last 18 - they will not find the Londoners easy opponents.

They will be fighting for their lives, and so will Hull (Tuesday) and Southend (Saturday) who are Ipswich's opponents next week.

After failing to win their first five matches under Magilton's management in August, Ipswich went on to win their following two games after their confidence was boosted by that superb televised showing at Loftus Road.

Fans will be hoping for a similar sequence this time, or the final nine games of the season will be some of the most nerve wracking Ipswich have ever been involved in.

A drop down to the third tier of English football for the first time in 50 years does not bear thinking about for a club carrying the impressive traditions built up by previous managers Alf Ramsey, Bobby Robson, John Lyall and George Burley.

Magilton's message to concerned supporters is: “The current situation is testing us all.

“We value the support of each and every fan, and they can be assured that my main aim in life is to have Portman Road bouncing again.

“Ipswich Town is their football club, and there have been - and may be some more - jittery moments.

“But I am convinced what we are doing is correct and we will not change the formula.

“Big games are the ones we all want to be involved in, and Saturday's is one of these.

“There will be pressure, but there is a level of pressure in every game. We can handle it.”

Ipswich, who hope to have Richard Naylor and Fabian Wilnis available for selection again, have not won, and not scored, for six matches.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter