DJ Campbell explains why he chose Ipswich Town over Blackpool reunion
DJ CAMPBELL has revealed he turned down the chance to rejoin high-flying Championship side Blackpool to move to struggling Ipswich Town.
The 30-year-old has a great fondness for the Tangerines having helped fire them to promotion at the back end of the 2008/09 season before netting 11 goals in the Premier League following a permanent switch.
Ian Holloway tried to bring the striker back to Bloomfield Road last week, with his side – who beat Ipswich 6-0 earlier in the campaign – among those starting the early front-runners in English football’s second tier.
However, Campbell – out of favour at Premier League side QPR following an injury-hit debut season at Loftus Road – decided that he would prefer to join a Blues side just a point above rock-bottom Peterborough in a three-month loan deal.
“There were a few clubs interested in me,” admitted Campbell. “Obviously people were aware that I could have gone back to Blackpool and people may look at this and say ‘why did you turn Blackpool down? They are top of the league or wherever they are’ and Ipswich are second bottom in the league.
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“It doesn’t matter to me. I looked at all the options I had and, to be honest, Ipswich, for me, was a different kind of challenge.
“I had a great time at Blackpool, scored a lot of goals there and I worked for Ollie (Ian Holloway) who is a great manager, but I wanted something different.
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“I spoke to former players here, including Kieron Dyer, I did my homework on Ipswich and got great reviews from my friends that used to play here. It is a great club, it has got a great tradition, a great history and to be honest it has got good players as well.
“The position in the league doesn’t reflect the players that we have got really. I spoke to a few people and they said that as well. The way we are playing doesn’t merit the position we’re in.
“So I put all of these things into context and made a decision – and I am delighted with my decision now I’m here.”
Having replaced Michael Chopra in the starting line-up, Campbell was taken off after 59 minutes of his Town debut on Saturday having inadvertently scored Town’s opener in the 2-1 home defeat to Cardiff City.
With his energy undoubtedly missed as the visitors went on to turn the scoreline on its head in the closing stages, some supporters questioned manager Paul Jewell’s decision to follow through with his pre-planned substitution. Campbell, however, had no qualms.
He said: “To be honest I’m nowhere near fully match fit. The last time I started a game was last season against Wigan (January 21) and before that was the first game of the season against Bolton. It’s been a while and it felt like it was a while to be honest!
“But I’m a fairly fit lad so it’s just the sharpness and little things – like the chance I missed early on – that I need to get back. The more games that I play, the better I will get I’m sure.”