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Thurlow Nunn Premier preview: Brantham and Stowmarket do battle in game of the week

Stowmarket boss Rick Andrews watches on saw his team upset by Kirkley last week. Picture: RICHARD MARSHAM

Stowmarket boss Rick Andrews watches on saw his team upset by Kirkley last week. Picture: RICHARD MARSHAM

Richard Marsham - RMG Photography Tel - 07798 758711

Brantham Athletic and Stowmarket Town go head-to-head this weekend as they both look to hang on to Felixstowe & Walton United, who preserved their 19-point lead at the top of the table after the midweek round of fixtures, writes Phil Griffiths.

The home side start the day in third spot on 44 points, with the Old Gold and Blacks a point further back but with a game in hand.

Stow fell to a shock defeat last week losing 2-1 at home to Kirkley & Pakefield, while Brantham were held to a 1-1 draw at struggling Haverhill Borough.

Both know they are reaching a critical point of the season where another couple of defeats will see them drop out of the promotion race, leaving second place Coggeshall Town to mount a lone chase.

At the other end of the table, Ipswich Wanderers face a difficult trip to Kirkley & Pakefield, midweek winners at Stowmarket Town.

The Royals have lost just one of their last six league games and seem to have steadied the ship after a nervous start to the season.

They currently sit in 12th spot and have scored 42 goals in their 25 league games to date, while Wanderers have conceded 50 in their 23 league games.

Each game is a cup final for the new management team at Humber Doucy Lane, and this will be as big a game as they have had all season.

They are currently on a nine match losing run in the league and any result here will be a major boost for them.

Hadleigh United, who took Coggeshall to the wire in midweek, host an Ely side that have surged up the league and are currently on a six match winning run.

The Brettsiders will be hoping to end an indifferent couple of weeks that includes a 9-0 thrashing at Thetford last week, and will feel a point would be a good result against an in form side.

Walsham-le-Willows, fresh from their midweek league cup win over the league leaders, host Haverhill Borough at Summer Road and should be too strong for their visitors.

Bartosz Bialkowski and Ipswich Town still have ‘a couple of things to sort’ before the Polish goalkeeper signs his new contract with the club.

Mick McCarthy shouted ‘f*** off’ in the direction of – but, he insists, not at – Ipswich Town fans after his side took the lead at Norwich on Sunday. Today the Blues boss, who has faced plenty of toxic chants over the last 12 months, was quizzed on the incident ahead of tomorrow’s home game against Cardiff.

Mick McCarthy has no new injury worries for tomorrow night’s visit of Cardiff City but admits he could make changes to his side as he prepares for the second of three games in just seven days.

Cardiff City manager Neil Warnock is anticipating another eventful evening when he brings his side to Portman Road tomorrow night.

Ipswich Town welcome a Cardiff side sitting second in the Championship to Portman Road.

Winning games of football is the best way to heal a damaged relationship between touchline and terrace, former Blues boss George Burley insists.

Suffolk Women’s FA Cup quarter-final

Ipswich Town 7

Bungay Town 1

Ipswich Town Ladies continued their attempt to defend the Suffolk Women’s FA Cup for the fourth successive year with a comfortable 7-1 victory over a spirited Bungay Town Ladies’ at Skyliner Sports Centre in Bury St Edmunds, writes Kieren Standley.

A Suffolk girl who braved the North Sea for the hospice that cared for her great-grandmother has been named Ipswich Town FC’s “Community Champion”.

Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy has apologised for any offence he caused while celebrating Luke Chambers’ goal at Norwich on Sunday, but has reiterated he did not aim his comments at the Blues fans.

Match highlights from Ipswich Town’s dramatic 1-1 draw with rivals Norwich in the East Anglian derby.

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