Mike Bacon: 'I have an awful confession.... I've begun to study the League Two table!'

Fans at Portman Road ranked low for both banning orders and arrests Picture: MARK HEATH

Where there is hope.....we have to somehow still believe! - Credit: Archant

SO, here we go then.

Fourteen games between now and the end of March - 42 points up for grabs, loan signings in, excuses out.

Aaron Drinan pops up to score the equaliser at Crewe Alexandra. Picture Pagepix Ltd

Aaron Drinan pops up to score the equaliser at Crewe Alexandra. Picture Pagepix Ltd - Credit: Pagepix Limited

Quite why we continue to hope, I have no idea, but hope is what we must do. Hope that somehow most of what we have witnessed with this Ipswich Town team in the past two or three years, isn't real and it's all going to come good with a long run of victories, a play-off place and ultimately promotion back to the Championship.

GRADING LAMBERT'S SIGNINGS. Andy Warren takes a look

The 'green shoots' that Marcus sees, but very few others, are there and we just haven't been looking hard enough. Oh, how I would love those 'green shoots' to prove they exist.

Brett McGavin places the ball ahead of taking a Town corner.
Picture: Steve Waller
www.stephenwaller.com

Brett McGavin, off on loan to Ayr United. - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

I was sad in one way, but glad in another, for Brett McGavin to move on to Ayr for the rest of the season. Hopefully the experience, along with team-mate Corrie Ndaba at Somerset Park, the latter having made two appearances for the Honest Men since joining on loan earlier this month, will do them both good.

NEW LOANEE, LUKE: Wise head on young shoulders

I notice Ayr are at home to Hearts on Friday night... I might see if I can find it and take a watch on TV.

Luke Chambers celebrates breaking the deadlock at Bloomfield Road. Photo: PA

Luke Chambers celebrates his goal at Blackpool back in October as Town went top. - Credit: PA

Back at base, it seems a long, long, long time ago Town played Blackpool earlier this season (it was actually October 2020, but feels more like October 2012), and won 4-1.

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I hereby cut and paste the intro from that game from the BBC Sport website... "A Gwion Edwards double fired Ipswich to the top of League One as they secured an impressive win at Blackpool. Luke Chambers and Teddy Bishop were also on the scoresheet as Paul Lambert's team extended their unbeaten start to the season."

Teddy Bishop celebrates putting Ipswich Town 3-0 up just on half-time. Photo: PA

Teddy Bishop celebrates his goal at Blackpool - Credit: PA

Wow! Was that really this season? Yep, it was, five games in.

Now, 18 games later, we're 11th and trying to convince anyone who will listen we are very much still in the promotion race.

I hope our new loan signings settle down, get a chance to play where they enjoy playing and are most productive. I hope we pick up all the points against Blackpool on Saturday, but I say that every week and I'm starting to lose heart.

TORY PARROTT. Hoping to fire Town into the promotion race

Should the next six weeks not go well, I dread to think where we could be in the table. You can easily slip down at a rate of knots, even if there are 'green shoots' all round.

I've got a confession to make.

Kayden Jackson puts Ipswich Town 3-0 up at Southend. Photo: PA

Kayden Jackson puts Town 3-0 up at Southend in 2019 in a League One clash. Now Southend are fighting to stay in the Football League and are bottom of League Two. - Credit: PA

I've begun to study the League Two table where I see Southend are bottom. Bolton, Scunthorpe, Oldham, Walsall, all there. I can't believe I'm doing it. When I was growing up as an Ipswich Town fan in the '70s, in Division One, anything from Division Two downwards was almost non-league to us - now it's our reality. And for how long? Years I reckon unless something drastically changes.

I know many of you have given up already. Can't say I blame you.

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

We have to live in hope as Town fans - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

I hope you don't mind if my cup continues to be a bit full - it certainly isn't half full! Just a sprinkle - a sort of splash!

Because things can change, football can change, results are where it's at. And you never know!

As the great Brian Clough used to say... 'It only takes a second to score a goal' - problem for Town is, Cloughie always played two up top!

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The only time we get a mention when pundits are talking about the Premier League these days is when someone gets tonked 9-0. Which let's be honest, isn't very often.

I thank Southampton Football Club for not only coming to our rescue against Leicester in 2019 when they equalled our 0-9 debacle at Man U in 1995, but taking it a step further last night and becoming the first team in Premier League history to lose 0-9, twice! Man U again the joyous victors.

The scoreboard scoring the final score after the final whistle of the Premier League match at Old Tr

Saints to the rescue again! A second 0-9 Premier League defeat for Southampton. At least we only had one! - Credit: PA

It doesn't take away our shame of that Man U 0-9 result. And at least then we were in the Premiership - albeit for not much longer.

It just sort of makes us feel a tad better.... just a tad!

Because these days, we'll cling to anything.

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