Fans get first chance to see new-look Blues

IPSWICH Town fans will get their first glimpse of the future with Michael Chopra and Lee Bowyer tonight expected to make their Blues debuts on home shores.

After a successful pre-season tour in the Netherlands, Town move closer to home when they take a strong squad to non-league Cambridge United (7.45pm ko).

Ivar Ingimarsson is again unlikely to be risked after injuring his thigh while training in Holland, but fellow new boys Nathan Ellington and Aaron Cresswell should be in the squad.

More than 500 Town fans are expected to make the journey to the R Costings Abbey Stadium looking to glean some insight into Paul Jewell’s thinking with the new season less than three weeks away.

For all but the most intrepid, tonight’s match will represent the first chance to see four of the five new boys. With Ingimarsson unavailable, the onus is once again on Damien Delaney and Tommy Smith as the only recognised first team centre backs in the squad – something that the manager remains keen to address.

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Town are expected to line up with two very different sides in either half but everyone bar Ingimarsson should be available.

Those who don’t get any or little pitch time could play against Bury Town 24 hours later.

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One striker they won’t be facing is Mildenhall Town’s John Sands who was expected to feature in his bid to win a professional contract at the Blue Square Bet Premier side.

But injury has forced the 25-year-old to withdraw from the United squad and he faces an anxious few days while U’s boss Jez George makes a decision on the frontman.

Cambridge, who started their pre-season with a 9-2 win at Biggleswade Town on Saturday, finished 17th last season, six points above the drop zone.

Meanwhile, fevered speculation that one of the players Town have bid for is Cardiff City’s Peter Whittingham was yesterday denied by Bluebirds boss Malky Mackay during a press conference.

n For all the latest from tonight’s friendly, follow @davegoods and @Stuart_Watson on Twitter.

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