Town set for ‘totally different’ pre-season ahead of ‘tentative’ September start
- Credit: Archant
The Ipswich Town squad will face the most unusual of pre-seasons when they finally return to training this summer.
The Blues have not played since March 7 due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis, with the League One season ended early last week.
It remains to be seen when third tier football will resume, although a tentative date at the end of September is being discussed. That is far from certain, though.
No return-to-training date is set either, with Ipswich already cancelling their planned pre-season trip to Germany and preparing to host summer friendlies at their training ground.
“We are completely in the unknown at the moment so it’s very difficult to plan for any pre-season schedule,” said Lee O’Neill, Town’s general manager of football operations.
“We have looked at different scenarios but one thing is clear, this pre-season will be totally different for the players and the staff.
“It will be the longest ever the players will have been away, when you think the last game was March 7.
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“You will be talking six months before a competitive game if we start in September so the longer we have them back and get them conditioned for a season of football, the better.
“The Euros (European Championship) are due to start in June and I would expect that to provide a deadline the Premier League will have to work to. I don’t know whether we will have to follow that schedule or not.
“If we don’t start until September or October, you are looking at playing two games a week every week, especially when you feed in cup matches.”