The Ipswich Town View: At least League One journey has got me back in love with supporting my team
Top of the league at Portman Road!
It was the chant used by our rivals up the A140 to taunt us, but now we have finally been able to take ownership of it.
Heading into September we are not only top of the tree but also boosting an unbeaten record and, following the 2-1 home win over Tottenham’s Under-21s in the EFL Trophy on Tuesday, riding the crest of a wave of four straight victories. But more than the results, it feels I have properly got my club back.
Experiencing the third tier for the first time for the AFC Wimbledon mid-week match, it was amazing to see the queues for tickets stretching down Constantine Road, and how charged the atmosphere was in the Sir Bobby Robson Stand. Of course, that was not so new, following Paul Lambert’s PR masterclass towards the end of last season.
But being the pessimist I am, and weighing up the evidence on the pitch of last season, I had feared it could be short lived with the baggage of that dire 2018/19 relegation campaign weighing heavy on us if we didn’t start like a train at the lower level.
Fortunately, that has not transpired, despite a difficult injury-list for Lambert to deal with in the opening weeks. What Tuesday showed was the strength in depth we now have, which will be vital for a potential 60-odd game season at this level.
Nine changes for the visit of Spurs’ youngsters but that included bringing in Emyr Huws, Jon Nolan and Gwion Edwards to the midfield.
And in Armando Dobra we have a real exciting young talent on our hands to begin to unleash on League One defences. There are so many positives ahead of an international break, due our call-ups: the Norwood-Jackson strike partnership; Downes showing he could be our midfield dynamo; Woolfenden’s emergence at the back and the introduction of a proper right-back in Kane Vincent-Young.
I’m back in love with football!