Ipswich Town give Suffolk superstar Sheeran squad number for new season
- Credit: EdSheeran/Instagram
Ipswich Town-supporting superstar Ed Sheeran has been given a squad number by the Blues for the new season.
Sheeran, who appears on the front of the Blues' home, away and women's shirts for the coming season through his sponsorship of the club, will also have his name on the back of one after being handed the No.17 jersey on the club's official squad list.
The number is linked to the musician's birthday, which he celebrates on February 17, while Sheeran's involvement could extend further, with plans to invite him to join the official squad photoshoot.
Sheeran was a regular at Portman Road prior to football's coronavirus shutdown in March of 2020 and, as well as sponsoring the club's shirts with the logo for his new tour, also brought global attention to the club when he streamed a gig from Portman Road, broadcast around the world on his TikTok channel.
“This is bonkers really, isn’t it!” Sheeran said. “When Ipswich told me I thought they were joking but I love the idea.
“I think this is going be a great season and I’m honoured to be a part of it. I just hope this squad number is only ceremonial because I want to see us promoted and that’s not going to happen if I’m playing!”
Town CEO, Mark Ashton, added: “Having Ed involved is fantastic for the football club.
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“We saw pictures of him wearing the 17 shirt when he was at the Club to perform his Euro 2020 TikTok concert so Paul and I spoke about it and we agreed to offer Ed the chance of that squad number.
"It’s our way of thanking him for his support and we look forward to welcoming him to Portman Road this season.”
Manager Paul Cook added: “Isn’t it great for the Club that we have got someone of Ed’s stature supporting his local team.
“Hopefully he’s going to be in the official team group as well. The players will love that and if we can show on the pitch the creativity that Ed shows with his music, we will do okay this season!”
Sheeran now joins exclusive club of men to wear the Town No.17 shirt which includes Keanan Bennetts, Danny Rowe, Kevin Bru, Jordan Graham, Andros Townsend, Andy Drury, Jack Colback, Dean Bowditch, Wayne Brown and, perhaps most notably, Simon Milton.
Sheeran's name and number will appear on the back of both home and away programmes this season.
Ipswich Town squad numbers 2021/22
1 - Tomas Holy
3 - Matt Penney
4 - Rekeem Harper
5 - George Edmundson
6 - Luke Woolfenden
7 - Wes Burns
8 - Lee Evans
9 - Joe Pigott
10 - James Norwood
11 - Scott Fraser
12 - Louie Barry
14 - Armando Dobra
15 - Corrie Ndaba
16 - Idris El Mizouni
17 - Ed Sheeran
18 - Macauley Bonne
19 - Kayden Jackson
20 - Jon Nolan
21 - Conor Chaplin
22 - Toto Nsiala
23 - Sone Aluko
24 - Kane Vincent-Young
30 - Cameron Humphreys
31 - Vaclav Hladky
44 - Janoi Donacien