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Ipswich Town managing director Ian Milne not a fan of Norwich City’s restructuring

PUBLISHED: 06:00 05 June 2017 | UPDATED: 17:16 05 June 2017

Norwich City's new head coach Daniel Farke and sporting director Stuart Webber. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Norwich City's new head coach Daniel Farke and sporting director Stuart Webber. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY


Ipswich Town managing director Ian Milne is watching with interest at what is happening up the road at rivals Norwich City, but insists the Blues believe in their own methods.

Ipswich Town managing director Ian Milne Ipswich Town managing director Ian Milne

The Canaries have undertaken some major restructuring following an eighth place finish on their return to the Championship. With their Premier League parachute payments running out in a year, the Norfolk club poached Stuart Webber from the back room staff at Huddersfield Town in April and handed the 33-year-old the role of ‘sporting director’.

Daniel Farke has been appointed as the club’s new ‘head coach’, the 40-year-old German recruited from Borussia Dortmund’s youth set-up just as David Wagner had been at the Terriers, while Steve Stone is ‘managing director’.

Meanwhile, at Ipswich, experienced manager Mick McCarthy oversees everything. David Bowman has a ‘director of football’ title, but essentially oversees scouting. Owner Marcus Evans is a hands-on negotiator, but always leaves the final decision on signings and sales to McCarthy.

“It’s interesting what’s going on at Norwich,” said Milne, whose main responsibilities are off-field matters. “They’ve gone for a sporting director and a head coach, but I must admit I think there can only be one captain of the ship – the manager.

“They are trying that route and it’s clearly worked at some clubs, but, it has to be said, not at the majority. We’re going to see more younger, foreign managers, like the (David) Wagners, but we believe in what we are doing here. We think it works well and it’s proven to have worked well in the not too distant past.

“Good managers do not grow on trees. We see that with so many of the managerial appointments that haven’t worked for clubs.”

McCarthy said as early as January that he would consider his popularity levels among supporters before committing to the final year of his contract.

“I don’t think that was a good time for him,” said Milne. “He was getting a lot of criticism, but we’ve moved on and he’ll come back refreshed.”

Asked if the club had considered potential McCarthy replacements during that period of uncertainty, Milne replied: “I don’t think it came to that. Mick and Marcus were talking the whole time. To be honest, I think Mick made a lot of those comments straight after matches when emotions were incredibly high.”

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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