‘Manchester night out has given us a lift’ - Town star

CARLOS Edwards insists that Ipswich Town fans will see the benefit of a players’ night or two on tiles in Manchester in tonight’s Championship fixture against Leicester City at Portman Road (kick-off 5.20pm).

The Town party moved on from Preston after last Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at Deepdale to let their hair down in their annual Christmas knees up.

“There were no riots in Manchester,” said Edwards, who is expected to have an important part to play against the Foxes when Town look to end a run of six consecutive league defeats.

“It is expected of teams to have a night or two away at this time of the year, and we wanted to get ours out of the way as quickly as possible.

“We let our hair and enjoyed a good laugh, although we know what can happen with too much alcohol.

“We were sensible and the manager did not get any calls in the middle of the night.

“It was a timely bonding session and now we can concentrate on the busy period of festive games.

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“We can lock the door on it now and concentrate on helping to lift Ipswich up the table.

“The current run is hard to take, and it’s all disappointing, but you can’t let if effect your daily life. When you are happy at home football comes naturally.”

Edwards is a Roy Keane man having followed the Town manager from Sunderland and he has no doubts about his ability.

“I love playing for the gaffer and would love to do so as long as possible,” added Edwards

“He can be an animal, but that’s only because he wants his players to do well.

“He’s not a bad fella when you get to know him and he’s a good guy with a great sense of humour.

“You can always have banter with him like when he was wearing a snood and about six scarves this week.”

Edwards can give an insight into the real Keane more than most and he says that the manager was low after the Preston defeat.

“For the first time I thought he might break. I was surprised, but I know he was hurt after we got nothing from the game after playing so well in the opening half.

“It was not one of his worst moments when he can go over the top.

“I’ve heard nothing about a new contract, but I’d love to stay as long as possible and if I play well I hope I will be rewarded.”

Keane has confirmed that talks over new deals are taking place with skipper David Norris and Gareth McAuley, but refutes he reached a new low at Preston.

“I’ve been lower in my time with Ipswich,” he said, and referring to the players’ Christmas party he added:

“They had Sunday and Monday off and there were no arrests and the time together could have done them the world of good.

“Their commitment and work rate has been fantastic, but we need a little bit more – a little bit of quality at vital times.”

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