Marriott, Mings, Williams, Pringle... Season of success for ex-Ipswich Town players set to continue on Play-Off Final weekend
PUBLISHED: 06:00 25 May 2019
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A number of ex-Ipswich Town players have already celebrated promotion and/or personal awards in 2018/19, with several more involved in the three Football League Play-Off Finals this weekend. STUART WATSON documents the former Blues who have enjoyed successful seasons.
Striker's role in Norwich City's Championship winning campaign shouldn't be underestimated.
With the prolific Teemu Pukki grabbing the headlines, Rhodes acted as super sub - stepping off the bench 27 times.
He got both goals in a comeback 2-1 win against Aston Villa, netted a late leveller in the dramatic 4-3 home win against Millwall and scored with his first touch to secure a vital 1-1 draw at West Brom.
Canaries fans are desperate to see the 29-year-old's loan deal from Sheffield Wednesday made permanent.
Joined Ipswich from: Homegrown
Left: Huddersfield (£350k), July 2009
Heading to the Premier League as his former employers prepare for life in League One.
Following three injury-disrupted seasons at Portman Road, the silky forward - let go at the end of his deal last summer - played a key role for the Blades as they pipped Leeds to second spot.
Was named their Player of the Year after scoring 15 goals and providing four assists. The 31-year-old started 36 times and managed 3,260 minutes on the field - more game time than in any of his five full seasons with the Blues.
Meanwhile, former Blues loan defender Richard Stearman played a bit-part role for Chris Wilder's men. Seemed to enjoy the promotion celebrations more than most judging by some of the videos which circulated on social media.
Joined Ipswich from: Nottingham Forest (free), July 2103
Left: Sheffield United (free), July 2018
Made it clear he wanted to join Derby once Frank Lampard showed early last summer. After protracted negotiations, a lower than expected price of £5.5m was finally reached after the season had started.
Was mainly used as a sub in the first half of the campaign, but started all bar two league games after the turn of the year as the Rams secured sixth spot on the final day.
Ended the regular campaign with 13 goals and three assists from 34 starts and nine sub appearances across all competitions.
Missed both legs of the enthralling play-off semi-final victory against Leeds with an Achilles injury. Remains to be seen if he'll be fit to face Aston Villa at Wembley on Monday.
Joined Ipswich from: Rangers (£250k), August 2017
Left for: Derby (£5.5m), August 2018
Snapped up by Derby for an initial £2.5m last summer after scoring 33 goals for League One side Peterborough.
The 24-year-old has enjoyed a fine debut campaign at Pride Park, netting 12 times - including two as a substitute in last Wednesday's dramatic play-off semi-final victory at Leeds.
Playford Road academy product made just two sub appearances in the league for Town before getting released. Had loan spells at Woking, Gillingham, Carlisle and Colchester before joining Luton in League Two. A £400k switch to London Road followed as he began his climb back up the pyramid.
Former Blues boss Mick McCarthy insists the striker 'had to move on' in 2015, claiming he was overweight and getting lapped in pre-season.
Has scored 73 goals across the four seasons which have followed.
Meanwhile, former Town loanee Tom Lawrence - who Derby signed from Leicester for £5m in 2017 - has scored seven goals for the Rams.
Joined Ipswich from: Homegrown
Left for: Luton (free), May 2015
Arrived at Aston Villa on loan from Bournemouth on January deadline day. Playing at centre-back, the powerful defender has played a key role in a remarkable late surge up the table.
Dean Smith's men finished fifth before beating West Brom in the play-off semi-finals.
Now Mings, the man Mick McCarthy plucked from non-league obscurity, is ready for Wembley. If Villa do go up, the 26-year-old could join the Midlands club on a permanent basis.
Joined Ipswich from: Chippenham Town (£10k), Dec 2012
Left for: Bournemouth (£8.1m), Jul 2017
Named Player of the Year following an impressive debut season at Bristol City.
Cultured centre-back started 45 games in all competitions as Lee Johnson's men fell just short of the Championship play-off places.
Has filled the void of Aden Flint, striking up a solid partnership at the back alongside Chelsea loanee Tomas Kalas. Only three teams in the division conceded fewer goals.
Joined Ipswich from: Portsmouth (£700k, plus Matt Clarke), Jun 2016
Left for: Bristol City (£3.5m), Jun 2018
Towering striker scored 19 goals in all competitions, despite missing a chunk of the campaign with a serious head injury, as Barnsley secured second spot in League One ahead of Sunderland.
Was linked with a £2m move to Bristol City in January and the Robins are reportedly ready to reignite that interest. has just been called up to the Wales squad for the first time.
Joined Ipswich from: Forest Green Rovers (£10k), Jan 2017
Left for: Barnsley (£750k), Jan 2018
Centre-back looks set for a big move up the pyramid - Brighton reportedly interested - after sweeping the board at Portsmouth's end of season awards.
The former Town youngster, 22, has got better and better at Fratton Park having been used as a makeweight in the deal which saw Adam Webster arrive at Portman Road.
Kenny Jackett's men won the Checkatrade Trophy, beating Sunderland at Wembley, but then lost to the Black Cats in the League One play-off semi-finals after finishing about them in the table.
Former Town striker Brett Pitman, 31, has scored 13 goals for Pompey this season.
Joined Ipswich from: Homegrown
Left for: Portsmouth (part-ex for Adam Webster), Jun 2016
Paul Lambert was keen on bringing the experienced midfielder back to Portman Road in January, but the 33-year-old opted to drop down a level to return to his beloved Black Cats.
A free transfer addition from Middlesbrough, he's made 18 appearances for his boyhood club in the second half of the season.
His mother died on the eve of the play-off semi-final second leg against Portsmouth last week, but Leadbitter still played on an emotional night to help set up tomorrow's Wembley clash with Charlton for Jack Ross' men.
Joined Ipswich Town from: Sunderland (£2.6m), Sept 2009
Left for: Middlesbrough (free), May 2012
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Popular former Town loanee - who had four stints at the club - finally left Crystal Palace in January to join Charlton on a six-month deal.
The injury-hit 25-year-old, who opened up about loneliness in the 'Sunderland 'Til I Die' Netflix documentary, has started 14 games for Lee Bowyer's men.
After finishing third in League One, the Addicks beat Doncaster Rovers on penalties at The Valley following a rip-roaring 4-4 draw on aggregate over the two legs.
Ipswich Town fans' main interest in today's League Two Play-Off Final between Tranmere Rovers and Newport County is James Norwood. The Blues are understood to be in pole position to sign the 32-goal front man when his contract expires.
There is a former Blues player involved in the form of Ben Pringle, the left-footed midfielder on loan at Tranmere from Preston.
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