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The handbrake is on, Chambers’ great quotes, and just watch Idris develop - Mike Bacon on the Blues

PUBLISHED: 17:00 23 September 2020 | UPDATED: 17:50 23 September 2020

Luke Chambers congratulates Gwion Edwards after he had scored Town's second in the 2-0 victory over Wigan.
 Picture: Steve Waller

Luke Chambers congratulates Gwion Edwards after he had scored Town's second in the 2-0 victory over Wigan. Picture: Steve Waller

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In his weekly look at life at Portman Road, MIKE BACON hopes the Blues can bring some much needed cheer to all

Teddy Bishop wins the ball as he tackles Gary Roberts.
    Picture: Steve Waller       
www.stephenwaller.comTeddy Bishop wins the ball as he tackles Gary Roberts. Picture: Steve Waller www.stephenwaller.com

In these confusing and anxious times for many, at least our football club has the chance to bring some much needed cheer to us all.

In fact, never has Ipswich Town had a greater opportunity to put a bit of joy back into the lives of its fans, than it has right now.

An unbeaten start, some good players to come back into the fold. Keep hold of Downes and Jackson and surely, for goodness sake Lambo’s side are capable of nabbing a top six place at the very worse.

Oh, I know, it’s just two games in. But come on, who isn’t grasping at anything resembling positivity?

Stephen Ward heads clear.
    Picture: Steve Waller       
www.stephenwaller.comStephen Ward heads clear. Picture: Steve Waller www.stephenwaller.com

The trouble for Town fans is we have become so used to disappointment, finding any positives at Portman Road takes some looking for.

Our cup is rarely half full - 10 years of going backwards has taken care of that.

But I do believe the handbrake has at last been put on the demise.

Of course, it’s easy to say before a ball has been kicked that you are going to enjoy a good season. That this time promotion is on the cards... and then it all comes crashing down.

But this season, it doesn’t have to come crashing down. It shouldn’t.

The start we have made, admittedly against hardly League One world beaters, Wigan and Bristol Rovers, should fill us all with at least a tad of optimism. A win against Rochdale on Saturday would cement it a little more, I suggest.

Leaving the pub at 10 on Saturday will seem little to sacrifice if Town can make it three wins out of three.

In fact the more I think about it all, the more positive I feel already.

Ipswich's second goal scorer Jon Nolan celebrates with a hug from Luke Chambers at Bristol Rovers. Picture Pagepix LtdIpswich's second goal scorer Jon Nolan celebrates with a hug from Luke Chambers at Bristol Rovers. Picture Pagepix Ltd

MORE: Andre Dozzell - big interview

So many footballers in the pro game are terribly bland in their pre or post-match interviews, many make Whitty and Vallance seem like Morecambe and Wise.

But one man who is always good value to talk to is Ipswich skipper Luke Chambers.

He rarely sits on the fence and comes out with statements few others in the group would do.

OK, so he’s been at Town a long time and likely feels he can speak his mind a bit more than some. But at least he does.

After the win over Bristol Rovers, Chambers said: “There’s a lot of noise around this football club for the last few years and we just want to concentrate on what we’re here to do – winning football matches.

Ipswich Town have started the season with two wins and two clean sheets for the first time in 27 years Picture: PAGEPIX LTDIpswich Town have started the season with two wins and two clean sheets for the first time in 27 years Picture: PAGEPIX LTD

“We need to turn the fortunes of this football club around because the last two years has not been anywhere near the standard expected. There is pressure playing for Ipswich Town and we have to handle that.”

He’s right and at least he says it.

There should be pressure playing for a club with Ipswich Town’s history.

Many Town greats have graced the field of play at Portman Road, changed in the home dressing room and worn the shirt of the Blues over the decades. As Chambers says, it’s no drama, players should deal with it - plenty do.

Freddie Sears under pressure at Bristol Rovers. Picture Pagepix LtdFreddie Sears under pressure at Bristol Rovers. Picture Pagepix Ltd

Chambers has his critics, but I always find he rarely looks for excuses.

As I said earlier on in this piece, this good start to the season doesn’t have to come crashing down.

MORE: Kieron Dyer: What to do with Downes

Andre Dozzell breaks clear at Bristol Rovers. Picture Pagepix LtdAndre Dozzell breaks clear at Bristol Rovers. Picture Pagepix Ltd

Good luck to Idris El Mizouni out on a season long loan at Cambridge United.

I mentioned in this column last week the importance of players playing, not bench sitting.

As Idris said himself, “I enjoyed my time here last season (at Cambridge). I was playing a lot of matches.”

Town manager Paul Lambert on the touchline.
    Picture: Steve Waller       
www.stephenwaller.comTown manager Paul Lambert on the touchline. Picture: Steve Waller www.stephenwaller.com

And that folks is the secret. Playing matches.

There is only so much a white board, a few cones and a warm bench can teach you.

I look forward with interest to watching young Idris develop as a player - and then coming back to Portman Road to dazzle us with his new-found confidence.


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