Barnsley game more important for Town

NO matter how Ipswich get on at Chelsea tomorrow, John Gorman insists their cup final comes on Tuesday at Barnsley.

Derek Davis

NO matter how Ipswich get on at Chelsea tomorrow, John Gorman insists their cup final comes on Tuesday at Barnsley.

Like everyone connected with Town the Blues No. 2 is looking forward to the FA Cup tie at Stamford Bridge, and perhaps even pulling off an upset, but Gorman insists it will not distract them from the main aim which remains promotion.

Gorman said: “I know it sounds ridiculous when we have Chelsea on Saturday but really our cup final is Tuesday.

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“We are really looking forward to going to Chelsea and we will give it our best shot. We are going there looking for a win, or at least a draw, and then to go through to the next round.

“But if we are being honest, the next game, Barnsley, is the more important.”

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Gorman accepts that Town fans are excited about the day trip to London and hopes in form Ipswich can spring a surprise.

He said: “We don't want to let 6,000 fans down and the fans deserve a good showing from us. If we come away with a great result, a win or draw, then that will be magnificent.

“If we play really well and come away with our heads held high that will be important for the fans too.

“It would be lovely to be playing these games every week but at the moment it is about picking up points.

“We are having a good little run and we can play even better. Even the Sheffield Wednesday draw doesn't look too bad now either.”

After watching Burnley run Spurs so close in the Carling Cup, after knocking Chelsea out at Stamford Bridge on penalties, Gorman hopes Town can fly the flag for the Championship in a similar way.

He said: “Burnley were a credit to the Championship, as were Derby who went to (Manchester) United and made a game of it. Burnley also won at Chelsea so it shows they can be beaten.

“Chelsea are an excellent side with wonderful players. Frank Lampard is a world-class player and we will have a big task.

“We need to put on a good show but Tuesday night is the big night.”

For all Chelsea's outstanding football it could be they play into Town's hands by being so expansive.

Gorman said: “The reasons they drop points at home is the way teams go there and shut up shop like Stoke did. But you have to admire Chelsea too for going on until the 94th minute.

“If you look at the highlights Chelsea had about 30 shots so it is not as if they are not playing well, they are just not finishing as well.

“We know how intricate Chelsea play and the way they like to pass so we have to be aware of that.

“We can go to Chelsea and even though Chelsea will work hard there will be occasions when we will get chances. We will be able to put our foot on the ball and get the chance to express ourselves.

“The great thing about this game is we can go there with no pressure. The lads can go out and enjoy themselves.”

Win, lose or draw, Gorman expects a sporting game and can't wait to be in the dugout next to World Cup and European Championship winner Luiz Felipe Scolari.

He said: “It will be an honour to be on the same bench as Scolari. It will be nice to share a glass of wine with them after the game.

“I was at Wycombe when Jose Mourinho brought a team along and they were a lovely bunch of lads.”

While Ipswich will put out their best side there will be plenty of competition for places and that pleases Gorman.

He said: “What has impressed me since I have been here is the lads that have not been playing.

“Like last week, the subs went on and did a great job. It is all about a squad now. We look like a squad that has depth and experience.”

Town have been boosted by the return to training of Jon Walters, who had a tight hamstring, and David Norris, who had twisted ankle.

Moritz Volz is out with a groin strain, while Ben Thatcher is a major doubt as he is still weak after being struck down by a virus hours before the win at Palace.

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