I'm Wright up for Rangers

BRING it on.That is the battle cry from ultra-positive Richard Wright ahead of Ipswich Town's rumble at QPR.

Derek Davis

BRING it on.

That is the battle cry from ultra-positive Richard Wright ahead of Ipswich Town's rumble at QPR.

Wright has fantastic memories of playing at Loftus Road and coupled with the championship clash being televised live and an evening kick off the Blues keeper can't contain his excitement.


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While a goalless draw somewhere doesn't sound particularly memorable for Wright keeping a clean sheet in what was the opening day of the 1997/98 season.

Wright said: “We drew 0-0 on a roasting hot day on the first day of the season. Kieron Dyer had a blinder and after about two minutes I dived at Gavin Peacock's feet and went on to have a good game. I still remember it and it brings back happy memories.

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“Loftus Road is a great ground, really tight where the fans are close to you.

“I love it and can't wait. Bring on the cameras, bring on the night game, I love it just bring it on.”

That match is not the only think evoking memories for Wright as he has also favourably compared the feeling of togetherness between this current squad and that of the one George Burley took to the Premier League.

He said: “I would say it is there like last time. There is a good togetherness which I compare with back then. We have some experienced characters in the dressing room. We also have good youngsters who are not afraid to say their bit.

“You need that and you need it on the pitch like against Forest when it was tough at times but everyone was geeing each other up.

“You all look after each other and help each other through. The coaching staff and management are helping everyone out. We have great coaches here, Steve Foley, Bryan Klug, John Gorman and the manager helping out.”

A win at the R's would push Town three points clear of QPR, who will still have two games in hand, and depending on how other results go, could push Town to within a point of the play-off places.

But Wright insists he doesn't spend too much time looking at all the permutations and added: “I remember previously when we were going for automatic promotion looking at the table and fixtures. We would play on a Sunday for example and others on Saturday and that team would get beat and that would mean us going above them but I don't do that now.

“At the moment I just take each game as it comes.

“We want to finish in the play-offs but I don't look at how many points we are going to need. All I do is focus on the game I'm playing in because I can't affect another game.”

During the 2000 campaign Wright was still relatively young and making a name for himself, whereas now he is considered one of the senior pros and he likes to use lessons learned to help out.

He said: “The experience you gain is learning how to deal with certain things. The build up to games, the press and the hype is there. “You look at the Chelsea game when there was a big buzz around the town and when we get closer to the play offs that buzz will come back again.

“What you have to do is put all that behind you and concentrate on playing football.”

Like all connected with the Blues, the former England, Arsenal and Everton keeper is longing for a return to the top flight.

He said: “We work hard and long days trying to put it right. We are all desperate to have success. Not just us players but the whole place.

“Whether that is you the Press, the fans coaches, the receptionist Edwina (Sesto), to the owner Mr Evans, we are all want to be in the Premier League.

“I came to this club because want to play in the Premier League and I still believe we can achieve and there is still an opportunity to do that.

“We believe we can get in the play offs. It is tough but there is no point in me being all doom and gloom you have to be positive and believe.”

The sheer pleasure of just playing is evident as Wright enthuses about being back at Portman Road, even if he had a couple of wobbly moments earlier in the season.

He said: “I felt I was playing well but then there was something, either a mistake or a save, when the ball would drop to one of their players and it was frustrating. I had belief in myself and I knew if I played regularly I would improve and I would be there.

“I'm not taking anything for granted I'm still working hard but I'm enjoying my football so much and can't wait until the next game.”

And that happens to be QPR and as Wright says: “Bring it on.”

derek.davis@eadt.co.uk

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