Blues can make Christmas play-off statement, says Dozzell
- Credit: Picture: Steve Waller
Former Town star Jason Dozzell says Ipswich can catapult themselves into play-off contention over the crucial festive period.
The Blues are all set to enjoy Christmas at home this year, as they tackle QPR on Boxing Day and Derby County four days later at Portman Road.
Before all that they entertain Reading this Saturday.
That’s three out of the next four Championship games on home soil – though there’s the small matter of leaders Wolves away on December 23.
Dozzell is buoyed by what he has seen from his old club, especially at Portman Road this season.
“It’s coming together again,” he said.
“I’ve been really entertained by some of the football at home this season. I think the Forest game (Ipswich won 4-2) was the best I have seen at home for a long time.
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“I still say the club is punching above its weight, at all levels, but it’s doing really well.
“Christmas will be massive, not just for us, but all clubs.
“Teams can really make a move if it goes well and I see no reason why Ipswich can’t do it, with plenty of home games coming up. We can keep in and around the play-offs, maybe move into them. Why not?”
Dozzell was part of a Blues side that won the Division Two title in the 1991/92 season when, ironically, the team’s excellent Christmas form catapulted them into contention at the top of the table – and ultimately onto Championship glory.
That season, Town beat Charlton (2-0) and Blackburn (2-1) during Christmas week, before winning at Port Vale (2-1) on New Year’s Day.
The team only lost four more league games from that point onwards in the rest of the campaign, on their way to that title glory.
“I remember it well,” Dozzell said.
“We never looked back after such a good Christmas.
“It’s about momentum, we built it up then and if Ipswich can get some going now, they can keep in that chasing play-off pack, if not get into the play-offs.
“The football is better, the feel-good factor is back at the club and that’s great. I’ve enjoyed the entertainment and that’s what fans want.”
Dozzell also had special praise for new signings Joe Garner and Martyn Waghorn.
“Those two guys have been terrific,” he said.
“I don’t know exactly how much they cost, but they have both been superb.”