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Paul Hurst Unveiled

Demonstrating a good sense of humour, a desire to entertain the fans and a steely, understated resolve, Paul Hurst gives his thought on becoming Ipswich Town manager and DEREK DAVIS was there to meet him. 

Paul Hurst demonstrated a good sense of humour when he was officially unveiled as the new Ipswich manager – and boy is he going to need it as he embarks on a three-year contact to turn around the Portman Road club’s fortunes. 

Diminutive Hurst, at 5’5’’ (1.65m) joked it would not cost much to erect a statute of him if he ever achieved the same success as that of the legendary Sir Alf Ramsey and Sir Bobby Robson.

When asked if he was going to be the manager that finally took Ipswich out of the Championship after 16 straight seasons – he quipped: “It depends which way you mean.”

He also made the media laugh when he was asked about taking the players to a military boot camp for pre-season and replied: “Did the players ask you to ask that?”

But don't be fooled. Hurst’s humour may not be as acerbic as his predecessor Mick McCarthy, or as clever as Scouser Joe Royle’s, but he knows Town’s plight is no joking matter and the steely resolve was apparent.

 For example, he followed up the boot camp question by saying even though they would not be going on assault course etc, pre-season would be tough.

His teams are famed for their fitness levels, getting results by still going strong in the dying minutes and more than one player joining his previous clubs like Shrewsbury and Grimsby have not being at the required fitness level, despite thinking they ahd been through a tough pre-season.

Hurst fended off the usual, predictable media questions, answered all fully and without resorting to clichés and getting across the underlying message that he knew the size of the task ahead – but was convinced he and his assistant Chris Doig were up for the challenge.

Hurst, at 43, has his whole career still ahead, knows he starts at Portman Road with the fans backing and is all too aware that he has three main objectives in keeping it that way.

Playing attractive football, getting Town promoted and beating Norwich.

The former Rotherham left back, who progressed as a manager at Ilkeston, Boston, Grimsby and Shrewsbuty, with relative success at all, was unequivocal in his footballing philosophy, it’s about winning and doing it in style.

“I have to prove myself to the fans.,” said Hurst. “Winning games and good performance will go a long way towards that.

“It is also about, style and play I’m sure they will get behind us. They will forgive us if we are playing the right way but not always getting results, although that will only last for so long if we don't win games overall.

“It is more than just winning. I’m not going to lie I like winning. Winning brings you success. We like to pass the ball and we like to press.

“I’m bored of watching football on TV and it has been like watching chess. If I wanted to play chess I would do that. 

“I want players to attack the ball, play with high intensity and energy.

“I’m not saying we will never need to play with a different approach because there are some very good teams and they will make it difficult for us to get the ball but win lose or draw or we will be pushing and if we can do that then we can live with a little bit of disappointment every now and then but hopefully we will have far more success.”

The first two players he wants to bring into the club are wingers. Not just speedsters with a few flashy tricks, but effective attackers with an end product, weighing in with goals and assists.

While giving young players an opportunity, and tapping into the Academy, is important Hurst insisted foremost in his mind was the lack of balance within the squad.

He wants the right mix of old heads, and young stars

At the moment, Hurst does not believe the balance of the squad is right, that is something he can address with financial support from the owner, but also clever use of the market.

“Maybe it is because I’m a Yorkshireman but I treat the club’s money as if it is my own and not part with it and also looking at value for money.

“If money was the only thing that brought success there would be no point in many of starting a season.”

Town have been tipped by the bookies for relegation, something Hurst shrgus off.

“I take no notice of that,” he said. “I had it at Shrewsbury and we managed to show that wasn’t the case.

“We look to be optimistic and approach every season looking for promotion.”

One of the first fixtures Town fans look for is the Norwich game, Hurst made it clear he was well aware of that and without making any wild predictions he acknowledged the importance of a first win over the old enemy since 2009. It was noted, and will no doubt be acted upon.

 Anyone visiting Portman Road, the surrounding streets or wandering the corridors will be aware of the pride in the club’s history, two managers have gone on to lead England after securing successive promotions and the League title and  also winning the FA Cup and UEFA Cup, while George Burley got the Scotland job after taking Town to the Premier League and two UEFA Cup qualifications.

“We are very proud to be here,” said Hurst. “Everyone associated should be proud of the history.

“That’s important. But that doesn't help me and Chris get results. Our aim is to make our own history. It is not about statues, although it wont cost much to makea life-size one of me.”

No silly promises, no raising of expectations and no one is going to get carried away but the hope, belief and desire is for fun time ahead and while there are so many factors which can’t be overcome, there are things Hurst and his managerial team can affect.

He said: “What I can assure people is we will do everything in our power and we will demand from the payers that the fans can have a team they are proud of and one they will see that as an absolute minimum people giving everything for the shirt.”

And that’s no joke.

Three Peninsula Athletes Win Commonwealth Games Medals

Sunday, April 15, 13.00

Three peninsula athletes have won medals in the Commonwealth Games, on the Gold Coast in Australia. 

Hannah and harry Martin both won bronze in hockey yesterday, while Ethan Waddleton today scooped a bronze in the Rugby Sevens.

The trio were all brought up in Holbrook, and still have family living in the village.

21-year-old Waddleton, helped England beat South Africa 21-14 in the bronze medal match on the Gold Coast, after losing out to New Zealand in the semis..

Former St Joseph’s student Waddleton plays as a forward for the Red Roses. He is also a Suffolk cricketer, while his dad Ian played rugby for Ipswich, and his mum Karla is a national hockey player for Ipswich.  

 Midfielder Hannah Martin, made her England debut at the Games, coming off the bench against South Africa, scored in a 5-1 win over Wales and in the 3-1 victory against Malaysia to reach the semi-finals.

England beat India 6-0 to take the bronze, after losing their semi-final to New Zealand after a penalty shoot out..

The 23-year-old plays for Surbiton Hockey club, and to win bronze in her first multi-games competition was quite an achievement for Hannah, who said: “I’m absolutely ecstatic, it was a brilliant team performance and it was great to finish with a bronze medal.

“We know they are good, we know they are strong and we know what their strengths are but we played to our game plan, stuck to it.

“I’ve absolutely loved the experience of the Games.”

Hannah’s brother Harry is an established GB international who played in the London Olympics in 2012 and Rio in 2016. 

Harry, who plays for Hampstead & Westminster, scored in the 7-0 opening game against Malaysia. The 26-year-old helped England secure bronze on the Gold Coast when they beat India in the bronze medal match after they went out of the semi-finals against host nation Australia.

This was Harry’s third Commonwealth Games after playing in Deli and Glasgow. 

He said:  “It was a really strange 24 hours or so.

“It was so gutting to lose to Australia so that was huge for us to come out and put in a performance.

“We wanted to be in that final more than anything and it’s great to win the bronze but it is still tinged with a bit of ‘what could have been’.

“The fact we can bring something back for those back home means the world.”

McCarthy Quits Ipswich Tonight

Tuesday, April 10, 22.10

Blues boss Mick McCarthy tonight walked out of Ipswich with four games of the season left to play.

Bryan Klug will take charge of the first team for the remainder of the seas, assisted by Geraint Williams.

McCarthy's departure, as revealed by Peninsula News two weeks ago was officially announced the following day, but he had said he was going to stay until the end of the season.

However, the former Sunderland and Wolves boss, quit tonight with immediate effect following the 1-0 win at home over Barnsley.

The surprise announcement came after Jonas Knudsen scored the winner against relegation-threatened Barnsley, McCarthy's birthplace.

McCarthy was angry after fans booed when he replaced debutant barry Cotter in the second half.

Then, during a three minute press conference the surly Yorkshireman showed one more lack of respect to supporters' views and the club by saying: “It was a disgraceful reaction, that but it’s the last time I’ll have to hear it because that’s my last game. I’m out of here.”

The club published a confirmation on the club website, showing it was a staged reaction by McCarthy.

He said: “I spoke with Marcus at the weekend and we agreed that it was in the best interests for me, the players and the club that I move on now.

“I said I would see the season out but it’s been a new experience and it’s not one I have been enjoying to be honest.

“I have continued to do my job to the best of my ability but there is something missing and I’m not comfortable with that.

“I have had a great time here and worked with some great people and to all those who have given me wonderful support over the last five and a half years - and there are many - I want to put on record my personal thanks.

“The players here can look forward to a new challenge with whoever comes in and I want to wish them, the staff and the Club the best of fortunes.

“I’ll also be looking forward to a new challenge elsewhere. I’ve still got a lot of football in me.”

Town’s assistant manager, Terry Connor, will also be leaving the Club having terminated his contract early as well.

Marcus Evans thanked McCarthy for the job he has done: “I want to reiterate my thanks to Mick and Terry for their fantastic service to this Football Club,” said Evans.

“I have always enjoyed a good relationship with Mick and that continues and on behalf of the Football Club I want to wish him and Terry the very best of luck going forward.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if we see them back here next season in the away dressing-room!”

Meanwhile, many Ipswich fans were rejoicing well into the night.

Time For A New Town Boss - Choose Your Favourite

Wednesday, March 27, 06.00.

If the majority of Ipswich Town fans get their wish then Blues resurrection will start this weekend with the demise of the self appointed Messiah Mick McCarthy.

 Rather than being a miracle worker with a limited budget, McCarthy is now widely-regarded as a flop, turning wine into water and attacking his former followers. Yes, he took Town into the play-offs, but he was outsmarted by Alex O'Neill and it was rivals Norwich that not only got the Wembley final but into the promised land that is the Premier League, yet again.

Meanwhile, McCarthy could not beat the East Anglian rivals in his spell at Portman Road and Ipswich now face a 17th successive Championship season, and for all the world appear a club going nowhere.

Ipswich is no longer the family football club, with the eccentric quirks of previous the owners which have made it many a favourite second club for neutrals and an object of pride and joy, albeit limited and sporadic success for Suffolk supporters.

It is now no more than a branch of the Marcus Evans Group, intent on either making a profit, or being used as a tax write off, ambitions of playing in the Premier League or winning trophies, a long forgotten ideal. 

McCarthy kids himself if he still believes it is just a noisy minority who are fed up with his boring, pragmatic unambitious style of football, attacks on supporters and sulky press conferences. The attendances speak for themselves, as do the widely held view on fans polls that say if he stays on beyond the end of this season, they will not renew their season ticket. 

Marcus Evans has been known to be patient with managers, he has little or no regard for fans' or pundits' views, but the harsh financial reality is he will confirm it is a case of 'thanks, but no more' to Mr McCarthy when an announcement is made in the next couple of days.

Peninsula News understand the decision has already been made, and MM has been all too aware since Town's abysmal goalless draw with Sheffield United on March 10.

That was also the weekend Shefki Kuqi was in town and Blues fans made it clear their affection for him remains as strong as ever, while McCarthy was booed and Evans (pictured, right) was watching and listening.

Under Joe Royle, Kuqi, with strike partner Darren Bent and midfielder Tommy Miller were a fearsome goalscoring trio with nearly 60 league goals in one season between them. 

The Kosovan/Albanian-born refugee, who was brought up in Finland and played for international football them, is now regarded as a top manager in Scandinavia.

There is no doubt the Flying Finn, so called after his swallow-dive style goal celebrations. would sell season tickets, be given a fair go by Town fans and would fit the long-forgotten ethos of keeping it in the Town family.

Another who fits that mould is Tony Mowbray, who is close to winning promotion with Blackburn Rovers. Mogga will forever be remembered for not only skippering Town to Premier League promotion under George Burley but for scoring in the play-off victory at Wembley against Barnsley.

Mogga, stayed on as a coach while Matt Holland took over as skipper and led Town into Europe two season running before it all went wrong on and off the pitch.

Others in the frame, although long shots at best, are Mick Mills, Burley and Holland, while Kieron Dyer and Titus Bramble who are coaching at youth level for Town could be brought in to help regain the Blues ethos.

Meanwhile, Steve McLaren has been linked and while the former England manager has his merits, will he be able to work within Evans' budget constraints and turn the club around.

My belief is a decision has already been made - but who would you choose?

Game For A Laugh Darts Team Celebrate In Style 

Arguably the worst darts team in Suffolk enjoyed cake and beer at their end of season bash. 

The Bristol Arms only formed their makeshift team last September to join the local Ipswich league to be sociable.

Despite some valiant efforts, and some truly appalling chucking of arrows at times, the Bristol Arms (in serious mood right) never disgraced themselves and even ended up winning one of their 16 matches, when they beat the Belstead Arms.

There were many close calls and plenty of laughs along the way as they tried to be as professional as Phil 'the Power' Taylor and his mates all season.

Just like the pros the team did not walk up to the oche with a girl on each arm, not because they were being PC, but more because not a girl on the Shotley peninsula would do the walk of shame.

Outgoing skipper Shane Stocker won Players' Player Of The Year and immediately dedicated the award to his son Jake.

He added: "When landlord Shane and I had the idea of starting a Bristol Arms darts team we never knew it would turn out like this. 

"It was a bit like recruiting a mix of the Dirty Dozen and Dad's Army with the In Betweeners in-between."

 New skipper Dave Turner said: "We are a work in progress, a bit like Chelsea at the moment, only with better players.

"The league needs to watch out because we have lulled them into a false sense of security this season. We have some top top, double top in fact, players joining us.

"We are an up and coming side and what we lack in getting doubles, we make up for in views down the river."

Arguably the performance of the whole campaign was from Lorraine Harwood who made the end of season cake. (pictured with new skipper Dave). While the seafood platter and chips by Bristol Arms landlord Shane was the best finish of the night.

Manager Insists Town Played Well But Lost

Blues boss Mick McCarthy insisted Ipswich played well despite slumping to their second defeat in a week.

A Milan Djuric header gave home side Bristol City all three points as they continue to press for a top six finish, while Town remain in mid-table mediocrity.

But McCarthy felt his side should have got at least a point at Ashton Gate and said: “We haven’t had as much of the ball as them, but we’ve had as many chances as them – probably more actually, if the truth be known. But it’s the one that goes in the net that counts.

“They didn’t get too many crosses in the box, but we got overloaded on that side on that occasion. I think Adam (Webster) has tried to stop him (Djuric) when he should have tried to attack it and he’s beaten him to it.”

The Blues have now failed to score in three games have netted just 10 in their past 17 matches across all competitions.

For God’s Sake McCarthy – Just Go Now

Tuesday, March 13, 21.45

The countdown to Mick McCarthy’s much-hoped for departure continued as insipid Ipswich meekly slumped to a 3-0 home defeat to strugglers Hull City.

Many Blues fans are hoping McCarthy will announce he is leaving Portman Road at the end of the season, after managing director confirmed an announcement will be made in a couple of weeks, just as season tickets are put on sale.

McCarthy has shown no ambition for some while, has been rude to fans and short-tempered at press conferences.With nine games left i the season he has refused to blood youngsters or even try nd play attractive football and many supporters have had enough.

After a dismal goalless draw on Saturday against Sheffield United, it was hoped Ipswich would be more adventurous against a Hull City that were hovering just above the relegation zone.

It was not to be and it was the Tigers that showed all the attacking intent, and how to take chances.

Marcus Henrikson netted with a defected shot from 20 yards before City hit a post from a similar position.

Harry Wilson made it 2-0 on 40 minutes when he finished left-footed from an Olna Aina cross.

McCarthy, who had left Martyn Waghorn on the bench, made two changes at the break by bringing his top scorer on along with midfielder Callum Connolly.

It didn’t help as Jarrod Bowen grabbed a Hull third just two minutes into the second half by beating the usually immaculate Bartosz Bialkowski at his near post.  

Ironic cheers during the game turned to boos at the final whistle and the atmosphere was toxic as deluded McCarthy kept his players on the pitch to give them a collective talking too before trudging off, seemingly still believing it is only a minority of fans who want him gone.


Bart Dedicates Call Up To his Dead Dad

Town keeper Bartosz Bialkowski has dedicated his international call up to his dead dad, Marek.

Polish keeper Bialkowski vowed on his father Marek’s death bed 18 months ago he would fight to play for his country and has called up along with Lukas Fabianski to play Nigeria and South Korea.

“I was beginning to wonder if the call up was ever coming but I never stopped believing," said the 30-year-old Bialkowski. “I knew there are so many good goalkeepers in Poland it was difficult to get in but I kept going.

“This is for my father Marek. In my last chat with him I promised him I would get a call up, so this is for him.”

Bialkowski is hoping to impress enough to book his place for the World Cup in Russia and is adamant politics should not interfere in sport.

He said: ““Going to the World Cup in Russia is the aim but I’m not on the plane yet.

“I’m in the departure lounge maybe but I have more hard work to do. I will do everything I can to be on that plane.

“People need to just go and enjoy football. It is ridiculous that other things going on in the world detract from football.

“People should just enjoy life and enjoy football. Politics should not get in the way of sport.”

Bialkowski, who kept his 13th clean sheet of the season did not have much to doagainst United as James Wilson hit a post from long range and Billy Sharp failed to finish the follow up.

Blues Lack Bite In Bore Draw With Blades

Ipswich 0 Sheff Utd 0

Saturday, March 10, 5.50pm

Clueless Ipswich failed to score for a third time this season against a Sheffield United side that saw their faint play-off hopes fade even further.

Bersant Celina had a decent effort saved by Jamal Blackman but otherwise shots towards goal were at a premium.

The Blades had  bit more of a cutting edge but Bartosz Bialkowski showed why he has been called up to the Poland national squad with a couple of decent stops.

Town had a lucky escape when James Wilson hit a post with a rasping 30-yard strike and Billy Sharpe was unable to follow up as his shot bounced over the bar.

The visitors had  couple of claims for  penalty but referee John Brooks waved both Ched Evans and Sharp's appeals away.

All in the results was slight more annoying than the paper clackers given away, and then discarded, like watching Ipswich these days it just seemed a waste of money.

Town have now failed to score against Sheffield United in three attempts this season after losing 1-0 at Bramall Lane, and the same shoreline in January's FA Cup tie at Portman Road.

A disappointing crowd of 15,152 showed there is little faith Town have any hope of a late run to make the play-offs.

Waghorn's Brace Bags Blues Win

Sheffield Wednesday 1 Ipswich Town 2

Tuesday, March 6, 21.45

Martyn Waghorn hit a sensational winner to give the Blues back to back awayvictories.

Waghorn had already fired Town ahead on 51 minutes when he got in on the end of a Callum Connolly header and kocked in from close range.

Lucas Joao leveled for the Owls 18 minutes later when he swept in a low David Jones cross.

Bartosz Bialkowski, Town’s player of the year for the past couple of seasons, showed why he is a contender again this year, with a brilliant save to deny Atdhe Nuhiu.

Town lost Mustapha Carayol to injury midway through the first half and was replaced by Freddie Sears.

Town Game Called Off

Ipswich Town's Championship clash with Hull City tomorrow (Saturday, March 3) has been called off due to safety concerns.

Although the Portman Road pitch is perfectly playable, the club took the decision after inspecting the ground's surrounding area.

Many areas around the ground are frozen and the icy temperatures are likely to remain below zero into Saturday afternoon.

Time To Blood Youngsters

With nothing to play for except just how mediocre Ipswich Town will prove to be, the remaining 13 games are an opportunity to blood some young blood.

Of course, when your manager’s main ambition is not to lose a game, it does not bode well for the likes of Ben Morris or Aaron Drinan.

Both are included in the squad to face Alex O’Neil’s Preston at Deepdale, but the likelihood of either starting is as remote of Town ever getting promoted.

Morris is an 18-year-old for Colchester who got an assist in his only Town game in the EFL Cup loss against Crystal Palace, but has yet to play in the league.

Irish boy Drinan arrived from Waterford with a reputation as a free scoring, old fashioned striker. With Martyn Waghorn going through a drought right now a bit of fresh blood could prove inspirational – but with McCarthy in charge no one is holding their breath.

Town have done alright away from home of late, with a couple of draws and a win in three.

They also traditionally do well against Preston and have not lost to the Lilywhites in eight years.

You can get odds of 19/4 for an Ipswich win with bet365 or 3/4 on for a Preston win, with a draw paying out 13/5.

Abject Town Slip To 14th

Ipswich dropped below Norwich after a controversial Kenneth Zohore goal for Cardiff City cemented the Blues’ mid-table mediocrity.

Zohore inadvertently used an arm to control the ball before netting the winner in the 65th minute in a game void of any real excitement or entertainment, in front of 13,205 at Portman Road.

Although Ipswich were not really awful throughout, Cardiff boss Neil Warnock, and McCarthy clashing on the sidelines, was more entertaining than the game for the most part.

The win keeps City in second as they closed the gap on leaders Wolves, who drew 2-2 at home with Norwich, who moved above Ipswich, that are now 14th.

McCarthy apologised after being caught on camera swearing and making a rude gesture to Town fans in the 1-1 draw at Norwich, but many supporters will be hoping he goes at the end of the season, despite bursting into life in the last 15 minutes.

McCarthy Tells Town Fans To F^*k Off

Mick McCarthy gave an 'up yours' arm salute and told Ipswich fans to 'f@*^k ff during Ipswich's 1-1 draw with Norwich at Carrow Road

Town fans had made their feelings known about his style of pragmatic, defence-minded football in less than flattering terms and  booed the replacement of Dominic Iorfa with like for like wing-back Jordan Spence.

McCarthy responded by gesturing to Town fans and swore in their direction as they celebrated Chambers’s finish, before Tmm Klose snatched a Norwich equaliser four minutes into time added on.

Social media went crazy with comments critical of the Blues boss, who has clashed with his own fans previously this season.

Despite pictures to the contrary, McCarthy insisted he was not directing his feelings towards the 2,000 travelling supporters but merely celebrating.                        (Town fans celebrating Luke Chambers' goal)

McCarthy said: “That was just a reaction to he game. It was just me celebrating the goal. “ 

He added: “No. It is just emotions at the game.

“I’m getting it from both sets of fans by the way.

“It’s great when the away fans cheer your name! Do you think that’s in support of me?”

McCarthy insisted he was doing a good job at Portman Road and did not feel the reaction would overshadow the result at Carrow Road.

 “Not really, no.,” said McCarthy. “Not at all. I keep doing my job as best as I possibly can.”

After dealing with disgruntled supporters with a number of previous jobs, including the Republic of Ireland and Wolverhampton Wanderers, Mccarthy is confident he can win the fans around, starting at home against Cardiff 

“Winning games overcomes it,” said McCarthy So we’ll see what Wednesday brings shall we?

McCarthy explained why he had replaced Iorfa, who had escaped a first half booking for clear simulation, with Spence.

“Jordan Spence came on because Dom Iorfa was cramping up,” said McCarthy. “That’s my tactical substitution and making the subs I have to make. I do my job as I see fit.

“It’s funny isn’t it? I’m answering questions about this when if we’d have come off and won, instead of conceding that equaliser, it would have been so different wouldn’t it?

"That’s said that you’re having to ask me those questions. I’m not bothered and I do my job as I see fit. And I think I do it particularly well actually.” 

Ipswich were the slightly more adventurous side in the first half but Norwich’s James Maddison took the game by the scruff of the next in the second.

Twice he had free kicks from just outside the area well saved by Town keeper Bartosz Bialkowski.

Polish keeper Bialkowski is make a late push for a World Cup squad place, and helped his cause with an excellent full length diving effort to turn away another Maddison effort.

Norwich manager Daniel Farke hailed his side’s late finish and said “We have the best scoring record in the last 30 minutes of all the teams in the Championship and I think it’s a sign of our physical condition but also our mentality and togetherness.

“It was no coincidence we scored in injury time.

“Timm has a good nose for dangerous situations and is always greedy to score. It was a really concentrated finish.”  

Win Could Mark End Of McCarthy

The last time Ipswich beat Norwich was also Jim Magilton last game in charge of the Blues.

Despite Town’s 3-2 victory in the April, 2009 Old farm derby, Magilton was sacked three days later as other results meant Town could  
not make the play-offs and Marcus Evans brought in Roy Keane.

Almost a full nine years on and Mick McCarthy would love to secure a win over Norwich, and cement their mid-table mediocrity ahead of the Canaries.

Sadly, it is true that many Ipswich fans, probably more than McCarthy accepts, would not mind in the slightest if victory at Carrow Road tomorrow (midday kick off) was followed by the current boss' departure.

(Town fans at Carrow Road last season )

It may happen anyway in the summer with McCarthy’s contract coming to an end and the wily old gaffer has refused to say if he staying or not.

With nothing else to play for, beating the old enemy has become the highlight of the campaign and it could halt the boos, at least for a week or so.

“I’d love to win it for the fans,” said McCarthy at his pre-match press conference. “They’ve been long-suffering against Norwich and it would be great for them to see us get a win. 

“It’s an exciting weekend. You get that butterfly in your stomach and that nervous energy. 

“I want to win this game. I want to win it for me, the lads, the fans more than anything, because I keep hearing the stats and I know how much it means to them. 

“You can’t do anything about historical fixtures. I am aware of the record though and it will mean a little bit more to me if we can win this on Sunday.

“I can only speak from my time as a player. If I lost to somebody, I certainly didn’t want to lose to them again. There would be something burning fiercely inside me not wanting to get beaten again.”

Ipswich forward David McGoldrick has recovered from a knee injury and could be involved.

Town fans can get 9/2 with bet265 for a win at Carrow Road, while Norwich are 2/3 on.

Carayol Planning To Crush Canaries

Monday, February 12 - 06.00

Mustapha Carayol gave  glimpse of what he is capable off with a screamer of an effort after going on as a second half substitute in Town'd dreadful goalless draw with Burton.

The winger, signed until the end of the season now, has Norwich's derby clash in his sight and promised if he plays and scores, he will not contain his celebrations.

"I will probably get sent off celebrating if I can score with a shot like that against Norwich," said Carayol. "I caught the ball cleanly and I’m sure it won’t be the last the fans see me hit from 25 yards because I never really turn it down if the opportunity arises.

“Sometimes they go in, sometimes they don’t but I’m just happy to get some minutes under my belt.

“I’m looking forward to the game but the most important thing for me putting in a performance.

“I might not play, so I’m just hoping we put in a good performance. If we do that I think we have a chance of getting at least a point.”

Boos For Boring Blues After Burton Embarrassment 

Saturday, February 10 - 17.45.

Ipswich 0 Burton 0

Ipswich needed a brilliant last minute Bartosz Bialkowski block to avoid complete humiliation by bottom side Burton.

Being held to a goalless draw by Nigel Clough's team, that still has not given up on staying in the Championship.

To make things even worse Town go to Norwich next Sunday, level on points and in danger of going below their East Anglian rivals. 

Boos were ringing out even before the first half had finished, and a few choruses of: “Mick McCarthy, your football is sh*t,” accompanied the poor passing, lacksadaisical football played by Town.

Burton on the other hand played neat, free flowing football, but their final ball was poor and when they did get shots off, they went high and wide.

Town could not even get their first ball working and Albion keeper Stephen Bywater was not troubled until the 80th minute when Town had their first shot at goal.

It was a fabulous effort from debut-making Mustapha Carayol who hit a thunderbolt from 30-yards, which was not far off target.

Town's first effort on target came in the 85th minute when on-loan Manchester City winger Bersant Celina, their liveliest player by far, hit a tame shot straight at the keeper.

Burton striker Darren Bent was warmly applauded on his return to Portman Road where he started his career and was a firm fans favourite after scoring 56 goals in 141 Town appearances.

Fortunately for Town, at 34, he is not as sharp as he used to be and was thwarted by Bartosz Bialkowski, in a one on one, and another snap shot was easily saved.

The Town keeper, watched by Polish national team manager Adam Nawalka made another stunning save in the dying moments to deny Kyle McFadzean's goal-bound header.

Bent was given another good ovation as he was substituted with an injury in the 70th minute.

Even Mick McCarthy admitted it was the worst game of the season,a nd the worst Town performance he can remember.

"I don't really know why,: said the Blues boss. "You can't blame any one thing but you have to give credit to Burton." 

Ipswich Town: 4-2-3-1 Bialkowski ; Spence, Carter-Vickers, Chambers, Knudsen; Connolly 5 (Gleeson, 60) 6, Skuse; Ward 5 (Carayol, 60) 6, Waghorn Celina; Garner. Subs not used: Crowe, Iorfa, Webster, Hyams, Sears.

Burton Albion: 4-3-3 Bywater; Brayford, McFadzean, Naylor, Akins, Allen, Davenport, Samuelson; Dyer, Bent 7 (Boyce, 70) Akpan. Subs not used: Campbell, McCrory, Sordell, Buxron, Barker, Sbarra.

Referee: David Webb. Attendance: 13,815.

Peninsula Cricketer in World Cup

A young Peninsular cricketer has hit a half-century in the ICC Under 19s World Cup in New Zealand.

Don Mlambo was part of the Zimbabwe Under 19s 2018 World Cup cricket squad that reached the semi-finals of the Plate Competition in New  Zealand.

Playing at number two, the right-handed batsman hit a steady 52 in 103 balls against eventual victors Sri Lanka, before being caught by Hasitha Boyagodo off Hareen Buddila’s bowling when sweeping to square leg.

The 18-year-old who plays for Shotley Peninsula Cricket Club based at Tattingstone, and has also  played for Copdock,  gained valuable international experience, although his playing time was limited to just a couple of matches.

Mlambo hit two runs in the final warm up game against hosts New Zealand in Christchurch, but had to settle for 12th man at best in the round robin matches.

Zimbabwe beat Namibia to reach the Plate semis and Harare-born, Suffolk student Mlambo is among the rising stars earmarked for future Test success with his country.

 

Ipswich Town

Only Victory Good Enough For Blues 

Anything less than three points in the bag against Burton this afternoon will be extremely disappointing for Ipswich.

Albion are rock bottom, struggle to get shots on target never mind score and have lost in all three games they have played against the Blues.

Mick McCarthy teased fans this week about the reported interest in him by Barnsley to replace Pual Heckingbotton, who joined Leeds as their new manager.

McCarthy said he was likely to disappoint both Ipswich and Barnsley fans by staying at Portman Road and insisted it was only a minority of Town fans who wanted to see him gone. Mmmm…

In team news, Mustapha Carayol is likely to make his Ipswich debut, so expect him to start like a train ad impress.

Sadly, or perhaps fortunately for Town, Darren Bent is an injury doubt for Nigel Clough’s Albion.

Those who like a punt, and gamble responsibly, can get 17/20 for a Town win, 5/2 for the draw and 4/1 a Burton win with bet365.

Omens Nor Good Against Mackems

Cole Skuse has recovered from a foot injury and fit to play In Ipswich Town's trip to Sunderland.

New signing Mustafa Carayol from Nottingham Forest is likely to feature at some point with Tom Adeyemi still not recovered, while David McGoldrick is also a doubt.

The omens are not great for Mick McCarthy and his Ipswich side who traditionally do not do well at the Stadium of Light.

McCarthy has never managed a winning side against the Mackems, even losing 6-0 when he was Millwall manager, and Town have lost their past seven matches at Sunderland, and have not had any success against them since 1989 when they won 4-2 at Roker Park.

Form is against Town too after winning just one Championship match on the road in eight outings, while Chris Coleman's Mackems have taken seven points from 12 at home.

Town fans can get 13/5 for a win, while a draw is 23/10 with Bet 365.

Transfer Window Round up

The Tractor Boys' lack of ambition was underlined by the underwhelming signing unwanted Nottingham Forest Mustafa Carayol and unproven Irish defender Barry Cotter from League of Ireland club Limerick for an undisclosed fee. 

The 29-year-old winger (pictured left) joins as a free agent, and has previous Championship experience with Middlesbrough, Brighton, Hudder
sfield, Leeds and Nottingham Forest.

The Gambia international has made more than 100 Championship appearances, while also earning four caps and scoring two goals for his national side.

The 19-year-old, Cotter, who can play right-back, in the middle of the defence or in midfield, signed a contract that will keep him at Portman Road until the summer of 2021. 

Both gave the usual platitudes to the club website and local journalists so we won't insult you by repeating them here.

Spence Hopes For Glory But Admits Town Are Way Off 

Jordan Spence has refused to give up on Ipswich Town's chances of reaching the play-offs.

 The attack-minded full-back admitted Town were beaten by the much-better side after Matt Doherty's fortuitous goal went in off his face for Wolves' winner, but insisted they can get back on track if they can secure better results at home.

“That’s the objective,” Spence said of the race to make the top six. “It’s an objective that’s aided quite strongly if you win your home games, but if we can get back to winning ways and put some points on the board then that will take care of itself.

“The disappointing thing is we feel we are more than a match for any team, home or away, but most certainly here. We feel like we’ve dropped points here – Sheffield Wednesday comes straight to mind, but as a group of players we’ll roll up or sleeves, analyse things and try to get better.”

Spence returned for Saturday’s loss after serving a three-game ban following his red card at Fulham, and while he was glad to return to action, he was frustrated to be on the losing side against the Championship leaders.

"People will have their opinions, people always seem to have their opinions on us, how good or bad we are, but nobody gets an easy ride playing against us.

“Are we far from what they are capable of doing? You have to say yes because we are a lot of points behind them. You have to be honest about that.

“But can and should we be able to give everyone a game here? Yes – I feel like we’ve done that for most of the year.”

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