Mike Bacon: We needed an enormous brush.... And it looks like we are getting one!

Town fans celebrating at Portman Road. Packed scenes like this won't be seen for some time yet, but up to 4,000 spectators...

Wait is almost over to the start of a new season - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

The fixture list is out tomorrow.

And ok, so as Blues fans, we are still a long way from an opening day home clash with Manchester United, followed by a Tuesday night trip to Chelsea, but fixtures are fixtures and we all look forward to them.

Ipswich Town manager Paul Cook on the touchline during the Sky Bet League One match at Portman Road,

Ipswich Town manager Paul Cook is overseeing a major squad overhaul this summer. Photo: PA - Credit: PA

So while we say goodbye to Hull, Peterborough and Swindon, we say hello again to the likes of Sheffield Wednesday, Bolton and Morecambe - who remembers going there in an FA Cup clash back in 2001 when Morecambe were a non-league team?

Those were the days - when we used to put non-leagues sides to bed with relative ease!

Anyhow, back to the great cull of the summer of 2021 that continues apace at Portman Road.

Including loanees, that’s 18 first teamers who have departed since end of the season, so my good colleague Stuart Watson informs me. That's quite some turnover. It might be more by the time you read this.

But is it needed? Of course it is.

Andre Dozzell has signed for QPR in a deal understood to be worth an initial £1m. Photo: QPR

Andre Dozzell has signed for QPR in a deal understood to be worth an initial £1m. Photo: QPR - Credit: QPR

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Let's not get all sentimental about it. We needed a new broom - and one with an enormous brush t'boot! And it looks like we are getting one, so no complaints from me.

Neither is it a reflection on individual players who have left, but a big reflection on how things have been allowed to drift for way too long at PR.

So, I imagine we are still set to see a few new faces in the coming months. It will be very interesting to see the types of player Paul Cook brings in.

As has been said before, he knows how to get out of this League. He knows he won't be in a position to say this isn't his team, because clearly at the rate we are getting rid of players, it very much will be.

Mark Ashton, the new CEO of Town, at Portman Road today

It's been a hectic first month in post for new Ipswich Town chief executive Mark Ashton. Photo: Ross Halls - Credit: Ross Halls

I'm still really positive about it all.

Things are actually happening, rather than being talked about.

Mark Ashton coming in has helped move things apace, pre-season fixtures are good to go. All we need now is to be able to go on holiday before the season starts!

But in all seriousness, this is a huge season ahead for Ipswich Town. A lot is riding on Cook and his squad.

The likes of Sheffield Wednesday, Wycombe and Rotherham joining us in League One, while the likes of Portsmouth and Sunderland are also still about, means it is going to be a tough gig for the Blues, or any team for that matter, to get out of.


We can't afford to drift about in League One for too long. The club is riding on a wave of good feeling right now and we have to strike while the iron is hot.

Everyone says we are a big club. But, like Pompey and Black Cat fans, that phrase is getting a trifle tiring while you are hanging around in League One.

It's actions, not words we need when the game starts on the grass.

England's Phil Foden (centre) controls the ball during the UEFA Euro 2020 Group D match at Wembley S

England's Phil Foden (centre) controls the ball during the UEFA Euro 2020 Group D match at Wembley against Scotland. Are you enjoying the Euros? - Credit: PA

Are you enjoying the Euros?

I think I am, although I never realised of the 24 teams only eight don't qualify for the next round (last 16) - my maths has always been rubbish!

That means we had - and are having - far too many sort of 'dead rubbers' in the group stages with teams just jostling for who and where they play in the next round, not if they make it through.

There should have been four more teams in it if you ask me. Where are Greece for a start?

Anyway, at least unlike Eurovision we are competitive in this. 'Nil point' - England, Scotland and Wales are certainly not.

Can England go all the way? I hope so, it's going to round off a pretty rubbish 18 months for whichever country gets to lift the trophy for its nation.

So, yes that would be nice. But for me, bring on League One. That opening day fixture, pray, that opening day three points.

You can almost taste it.

Up the Town.

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