Passion from Carlos Edwards: 'You can't be an Ipswich player and not push for promotion... This is Ipswich Town we are talking about!'

Carlos Edwards outside Ipswich Town FC. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Carlos Edwards outside Portman Road. He says Blues players have promotion 'in the palm of their hands'.

Former Ipswich Town skipper, Carlos Edwards, says Blues players have promotion 'in the palm of their hands' and its up to them to 'go the distance'.

In a passionate plea, the 42-year-old who played almost 200 times for the Blues and was players' player-of-the-year in the 2011/12 season believes, despite Town's recent poor run of form, the team are more than capable of promotion, and should look to grab it with both hands.

Flashback: Carlos Edwards celebrates his late winner for Ipswich Town against Derby County. Picture:

Passion! Carlos Edwards celebrates a late Town winner at Derby back in 2013 - Credit: Archant

He also says Town's injury crisis should act as a spur to fit players to retain the shirt - not ever be worried they are set to lose their place.

"For the Ipswich players, promotion is in the palm of their hands. As a player, it is up to you to take it and go the distance," Edwards said.

"Ipswich are too much of a big club. You can't be an Ipswich Town player and not push for promotion in any division you are in. This is Ipswich Town we are talking about here.

Town fans celebrate during the 3-0 home win over Shrewsbury Town at the start of last season. Pictur

'This is Ipswich Town we are talking about'.... Carlos Edwards thinks highly of the Blues and their fans. - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

"I played for Ipswich and Sunderland. And now look, you have two of the bigger clubs in English football fighting to get in the top six of League One. That's crazy.

"Ipswich shouldn't be fighting to get into the play-offs, they should be top three."

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Edwards, who is currently plying his trade for Bury Town in Isthmian North, was a popular member of both Roy Keane and Mick McCarthy Town teams. He signed for the club in September 2009, along with Grant Leadbitter, for a combined fee of £4m. He left Town five years later.

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And he's not convinced injuries to the Blues team should stop their progression.

"Fortunately, as a player, I never had to hope someone got injured for me to get a run of games," he said.

"Then again, I used to be pushing all the time. If the manager didn't want me to play, fine. But if I had the shirt, I wanted to keep it.

"If a player is injured and you are in the team, you must make sure he has a nightmare trying to get back in the team when he is fit.

Mark McGuinness and Stephen Ward look concerned as Teddy Bishop receives attention.
Picture: St

The Blues are missing Teddy Bishop through injury. It's up to others to make the shirt their own, says Carlos Edwards - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

"That's how it was when I played. Today, too many players have a run of games because someone is injured, but in the back of their minds, mentally, they are already thinking when so and so comes back, he'll play.

"But you can't think like that, hell no. You have to make sure when that player is fit, he has to wait, he has to wait for you to get injured before he gets his place back.

"Ipswich are good enough to go up. I have no doubt they can go the extra mile."

Luke Chambers celebrates breaking the deadlock at Bloomfield Road. Photo: PA

More than good enough. Luke Chambers celebrates his goal as Town thrashed Blackpool earlier in the season. - Credit: PA

Edwards is still coaching at youth level with AFC Sudbury, while playing for Bury Town. He was doing some coaching at the Ipswich Academy, but not know.

The non-league game is currently suspended and there is talk it will be null and voided, something Edwards hopes won't happen.

"I don't want to think of it," he said.

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"It would really be tough because the boys at Bury and the management have worked really hard this summer to get fit, both physically and mentally. We went on a good cup run, but have only played four league games and it is obviously a headache to even think about it being written off.

"Of course everyone's health is more important, but I hope they can find a way to get the season up and running."

But if it is null and voided, will that be it for Edwards - he will be nearing 43 years old when next season starts?

"You put me on the spot!," he laughs.

Carlos Edwards in action during Bury Town's last outing before lockdown, a 2-2 draw against Romford.

Carlos Edwards in action for Bury Town in a 2-2 draw with Romford. He has no intention of hanging up his boots yet! - Credit: Archant

"I think I would say, I'd give it another year. I enjoy it that much. I think some of the younger lads like having me around, even though I think some of them think I'm about 25!

"I have no problem playing 90 minutes because I'm naturally fit. If the gaffer wants me to stay another year that's fine by me. But I'm happy for the boys to step up and give me less playing time if that's the way it is.

"But say, I did pack up, I would still be in the thick of it at Bury. Ben Chenery, the chairman, Russell Ward and Alan Lee, it's a fantastic back room staff for that level.

"They have the recipe for success."