Paul Jewell leads Ipswich Town back into the Suffolk Premier Cup

IPSWICH Town will next season lock horns with the cream of local non-league football after announcing plans to return to the Suffolk Premier Cup.

The Blues last competed in the county’s premier cup competition in 2009/10 when they beat Needham Market 4-1 at Portman Road.

Roy Keane took them out of the cup the following season, a decision continued in Paul Jewell’s first full year.

But after Jewell initially questioned Town’s entry into the competition last season, he has now done a U-turn – making the decision for the club to re-enter, to the delight of Suffolk FA and the non-league community who will hope to get a plumb draw against the Blues.

Jewell said: “We’re looking forward to taking part in the Suffolk Premier Cup and facing local opposition.”

With a decision still to be made about a reserve league next season – an Under-21s competition appears to be the likely scenairo – the Suffolk Premier Cup will be an ideal way for Jewell to blood youngsters, fringe players and first-teamers coming back from injury.

Suffolk FA’s football services manager, Jairo Marin said: “The Premier Cup is the most prestigious competition within the county and I am delighted that our most senior club will be taking part in it once again next season.

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“I am sure that the players, staff and supporters of all other competing teams will be excited by the prospect of going up against their professional neighbours.”

The draw for the first round of the competition will be held on Friday, July 20 between 6.30pm and 7.00pm.