Jewell lets Ipswich Town fans into a secret -’I knew we were not good enough’
PAUL Jewell let shell-shocked Ipswich Town fans into a secret today when he revealed that he always knew his squad was not good enough to reach the Championship play-offs.
The weekend is being used to take stock after Thursday’s 5-1 home beating by Norwich City when any thoughts of gaining a top six finish were well and truly shattered.
Jewell takes his team to Swansea for an Easter Monday afternoon encounter hoping to see the recent run of good away displays continue.
But ringing in his ears – and his players and fans as well – is the Canary brethren singing at the tops of their voices after Thursday’s match: “We beat the scum 9-2.”
It added to the humiliation and followed the 4-1 battering Ipswich received on their November visit to Carrow Road.
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Thursday’s debacle was Ipswich’s biggest ever home defeat to Norwich, and more worrying it was their tenth loss at home this campaign.
Only once before in their history have Town lost more league matches at Portman Road, and that was in 1994/95 when they won five, drew three and lost 13.
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Jewell always put a realistic slant on hopes that a late surge would see his side end the season in a play-off place, and he said:
“I always knew that this team did not carry a serious play-off threat and that we need improvement in certain areas.
“I know what it takes to reach the top echelons.
“You never want to dampen supporters’ enthusiasm but I’ve known from day one that the remit was to stay in this division.
“We’ve done that and the lads deserve great credit.
“But if we’re going to have a serious challenge next year we’ve got to do a lot better.”
Jewell sees a busy time ahead as he looks to bring in players that will turn Ipswich into a side that could give Norwich a decent game.
Being doubled by QPR, Norwich, Reading and Nottingham Forest has shown the big gap that exists between what Town are currently capable of achieving and where the top teams can do.
“It’s up to me to put things right,” Jewell added.
“We are not bright enough at home and need people at the sharp end that can do a job like the Norwich front two.
“We see lots of the ball, but are a bit dithery and lose out on vital battles at both business ends of the field.”
Jewell had his players training today and will assess his troops before announcing his squad for Swansea with keeper Brian Murphy possibility coming into consideration while 17-year-old Joe Whight could be given his debut.