Ipswich Town midfielder Jay Tabb keen to avoid musical Millwall fans on Saturday

ITFC v Derby County
Right is Jay Tabb.

ITFC v Derby County Right is Jay Tabb. - Credit: Gregg Brown

Millwall v Ipswich: No one will be more relieved to start than Jay Tabb, should the diminutive midfielder get the nod from Mick McCarthy at Millwall today.

The 30-year-old has made 21 appearances for the Blues this season, five as a substitiute, and has become a dependable figure in the Town engine room, while always proving his worth from the bench.

Tabb was withdrawn early in the second half during the home defeat to Derby last weekend, succumbing to the illness that affected a number of Town players and which has put paid to Teddy Bishop’s hopes of being involved today.

Therefore, he may have to settle for a place on the bench, but will be hoping to start, in order to avoid the colourful banter thrown his way from the home faithful.

“I’ll be glad if I’m starting, I hate being sub at Millwall as I always get the fans singing the Snow White and the Seven Dwarves song at me,” said Tabb, who stands at just 5ft 7ins.

“It doesn’t help when all our subs laugh and I am sure (fitness trainer) Andy Liddell is the one that starts it off!

“The fans start singing ‘Hi-ho, Hi-ho it’s off to work we go’ and when I return to the bench, Lids (Liddell) is always there with a big smile on his face.

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“He loves it and gives me a bit of stick for it but he doesn’t really start it.”

Meanwhile, Tabb says there is no need to panic, following the 1-0 defeat to Derby last time out and pointed to his former club Reading who, with the Blues midfielder in the squad, defied the odds to clinch the Championship title in 2012.

Ipswich are currently third in the Championship, a point off second-placed Derby and leaders Bournemouth, who travel to Nottingham Forest and Rotherham respectively today.

“It’s a totally different situation to the one we faced at Reading at this stage,” explained Tabb.

“At this stage we had just lost to Stevenage in the FA Cup and were 13th in the league and were really probably looking below us than above us.

“We then went on a crazy run, winning 17 of the last 19 games which is unheard of, so we weren’t up there until right near the end, I think we went top with two games to go and won the league.

“We have been up there now for a few weeks and are there to be shot at, but we have got a great bunch of lads here – it’s the best bunch of lads I have been with in 13 years as a professional – and if we can bounce back at Millwall, then I think things could turn out well.”

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